Mayor Rosalynn Bliss became the City of Grand Rapids’ first female Mayor when she took office on January 1, 2016. She previously served as a Second Ward City Commissioner for 10 years.
Mayor Bliss is also Grand Valley State University’s endowed chair for the Frederik Meijer Honors College. She earned bachelor’s degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of South Alabama and a master’s in social work from Michigan State University. She has over twenty years of experience in the fields of domestic violence and child welfare before serving as Mayor.
Mayor Bliss is an active member of the community. She is Past President of the Michigan Municipal League and serves on the boards of the Downtown Development Authority, Experience Grand Rapids, Convention Arena Authority, Economic Club of Grand Rapids, Mayor’s Innovation Project and Interurban Transit Partnership, among many other organizations.
Mayor Bliss has been recognized and honored locally as well as statewide for her commitment, dedication and work in the field of child abuse and neglect and for her leadership in the community. Recognitions include:
- WMCAT’s Award for Innovation
- Kathryn Timmer Literacy Award
- Crain’s 100 Most Influential Women
- Grand Rapids Business Journal’s 50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan
- Five-time recipient of Grand Rapids Business Journal’s 40 Under Forty distinction
- West Michigan Public Relations Society of America’s Communicator of the Year Award
- ATHENA Young Professional Award
- Tim Pope Memorial Award for Outstanding Young Governmental Leader
- Christine Nelson Professional Award for Service to Children
- Michigan Professional Society on the Abuse of Children Special Recognition Award
As Mayor, she is committed to supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs as well as addressing disparities in our community and making sure that Grand Rapids is a great place for everyone.