Phil Gordon (politician)

Phil Gordon (born April 18, 1951) is an American politician who served as the 58th mayor of Phoenix, Arizona from 2004 to 2012 and a member of the Phoenix City Council. Gordon is a member of the Democratic Party.

Phil Gordon
Phil Gordon by Gage Skidmore.jpg
58th Mayor of Phoenix
In office
January 2, 2004 – January 3, 2012
Preceded bySkip Rimsza
Succeeded byGreg Stanton
Phoenix City Council
In office
January 5, 1997 – October 30, 2004
Personal details
Born (1951-04-18) April 18, 1951 (age 68)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Alma materUniversity of Arizona
Arizona State University

Early life, education, and early careerEdit

Born to Sidney and Judy Gordon, he is the oldest of three children and the grandson of a Lithuanian Jewish immigrant.[1] In 1960, the Gordon family moved to Phoenix, where Phil attended Madison Meadows Elementary and Middle School and Central High School. He attended the University of Arizona and graduated with a bachelor's degree in education. After earning his undergraduate degree, Gordon entered Arizona State University Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law.

Gordon has had worked in a variety of professions, including as a school teacher, lawyer, business owner, chairman of Landiscor Aerial Photography Company, as well serving on the Madison School Board.

After serving as chief of staff to a former Phoenix Mayor in 1996, Gordon's interest in Phoenix became his incentive to seek public office. Pledging to fight crime and preserve neighborhoods, he entered the race for Phoenix City Council and was elected in 1997 and 2001.[citation needed]


The former city councilman was elected mayor in the non-partisan mayoral race on September 9, 2003, garnering 72 percent of the vote.[2] He took office on January 2, 2004.[3] He was re-elected on September 11, 2007, with 77 percent of the vote.[4][5]

During his tenure at Phoenix City Hall, Gordon has focused heavily on revitalizing downtown Phoenix. He and other members of the Phoenix City Council have put more than $1 billion into the city's core,[6][7] investing in projects such as the revitalization of the Phoenix Convention Center, the construction of a new $350 million Sheraton hotel,[8] and the creation of a downtown Arizona State University campus.[9]

Gordon has also been a staunch backer of a controversial $1.1 billion multi-modal transportation system which was approved by 65 percent of Phoenix voters in March, 2000.[10][11][12] The Mayor has engaged in a verbal dispute with Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio over issues related to illegal immigration,[13][14] opposing the controversial Arizona SB 1070 law, which he has considered to be racist and poorly drawn.

In 2008, a group calling itself American Citizens United set up a petition to recall Gordon from office. The group faltered and did not submit any signatures.[15][16]

Additionally, President George W. Bush appointed Gordon to serve on the Honorary Delegation to accompany him to Jerusalem for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the State of Israel in May 2008.[17]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Spence, Rebecca (2008-07-24). "Phoenix Mayor Challenges Popular Sheriff's Anti-Immigration Tactics – The Jewish Daily Forward". Retrieved 2010-08-29.
  2. ^ SUMMARY OF MAYOR AND COUNCIL ELECTION SEPTEMBER 9, 2003 Archived April 3, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "Arizona Republic from Phoenix, Arizona on January 2, 2004 · Page 28". Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  4. ^ Phoenix Business Journal, September 2007
  5. ^ Gordon sweeps mayor's race, sales tax increase passes - Topix
  6. ^ Arizona Republic, Sept. 2006
  7. ^ About Downtown Phoenix
  8. ^ Arizona Republic, February 2007 "Filling a Void: Big-ticket projects (in downtown) include a new Arizona State University campus, a University of Arizona medical school, light rail, a $600 million-plus expansion of the Phoenix Convention Center and a new $350 million Sheraton hotel.
  9. ^ Arizona Republic, August 2006
  10. ^ Phoenix Business Journal
  11. ^ Phoenix Business Journal, December 2004
  12. ^ Phoenix Business Journal, Feb. 2005
  13. ^ Arizona Republic, April 2008
  14. ^ KTAR, April 2008
  15. ^ "Nativists' recall effort against Phil Gordon fails, not one signature submitted" Phoenix New Times, August 28, 2008.
  16. ^ ""The Valley's Talk Station" - Valley Headlines". KFYI. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
  17. ^ "Bush Visit May Boost Olmert - May 13, 2008 - The New York Sun". 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2010-08-29.

External linksEdit