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Greg Ballard

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Title: Greg Ballard  
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Subject: Nancy McFarlane, Lee Leffingwell, Indianapolis mayoral election, 2011, Megan Barry, Mick Cornett
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Greg Ballard

Gregory A. Ballard
48th Mayor of Indianapolis
Assumed office
January 1, 2008
Preceded by Bart Peterson
Personal details
Born (1954-11-20) November 20, 1954
Indianapolis, Indiana
Political party Republican
Residence Indianapolis, Indiana
Alma mater Indiana University
Occupation Lecturer, Former Marine
Religion Roman Catholic
Military service
Nickname(s) Greg
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1978–2001
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Battles/wars Gulf War
Awards Legion of Merit

Gregory A. Ballard (born 1954) is the Republican mayor of Indianapolis, Indiana, United States. On Tuesday, November 6, 2007, he defeated two-term incumbent Democratic Mayor Bart Peterson by 51% to 47%.[1] It was described as one of the biggest upsets in the political history of Indiana.[2] He was re-elected to the position in November 2011, by the same margin.

Early life, education, and military service

Ballard was born at Methodist Hospital of Indianapolis to Duard and Mary Ballard. He was born and raised in the city. He graduated from Cathedral High School, a Catholic school. Ballard earned a Bachelor's Degree in Economics from Indiana University. Ballard became a member of Delta Tau Delta.

After graduating, he joined the United States Marine Corps. He continued his education while serving in the Marines, becoming a distinguished graduate of the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and attained a master’s degree in military science from the Marine Corps University, which included operations analysis studies. While stationed in California, he met his future wife Winnie. He later was transferred to Okinawa, Japan. He also served in the first Gulf War. His military career culminated in his service with the United States European Command in Stuttgart, Germany, where he retired in 2001 with 23 years of service. While in the service, he earned numerous awards, including the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Kuwait Liberation Medal, the Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, and the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.

Personal life

Greg Ballard is married to Winnie Ballard, together they have a son and a daughter.[3]

Business career

Beginning in 2001, Ballard worked for Bayer in Indianapolis, before becoming self-employed as a leadership and management consultant. He authored and self-published The Ballard Rules: Small Unit Leadership. He has also taught seminars at the Indiana Business College. He is an avid golfer.[4]

Mayor of Indianapolis



Ballard was the only Republican to file for mayor, as few members of the city's once-dominant Republican Party were willing to run against Peterson. Ballard was dramatically outspent by Peterson. He had only $300,000 in campaign funds and low name recognition when he began the race.[5] In comparison, Peterson already had $2.9 million in April while Ballard had only $9,560 at the time.[6] As late as October 14, Ballard had run no TV ads.[6] An October 19 campaign finance report showed that Peterson had raised $1.5 million since April and still had that much on hand to spend. At that point in time Ballard had only $51,000 left, meaning that Peterson had 30 times the funds that Ballard had during the last three weeks of the campaign.[7]

On November 6, 2007, Ballard defeated incumbent Mayor Peterson 50%–47%, a difference of 5,312 votes.[8] Unhappiness with rapidly increasing taxes[9] and crime were seen as the biggest reasons for Peterson's defeat. Republicans also recaptured control of the City-County Council for the first time in four years. In his acceptance speech, Ballard told the audience he considers this campaign "the classic, if not the ultimate, example of grassroots politics."[10]


Ballard won re-election to a second term, defeating former Deputy Mayor Melina Kennedy, 51%–47%.[11][12]

First day

Ballard was sworn into office on Tuesday, January 1, 2008 at the Indiana War Memorial, in downtown Indianapolis. Ballard chose this site saying that it honored the men and women of the armed services. Ballard said that his first act as mayor would be to put the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department back under mayoral control, instead of its then-current control by Marion County Sheriff Frank J. Anderson.[6]

Proposed utility transfer

The Ballard administration is taking steps to sell the city's water and wastewater utilities to Citizens Energy Group and spend the $450 million the city will get in return on fixing streets. Improvements will include: paving, resurfacing, new sidewalks, more greenways, repaired bridges [13]

RebuildIndy initiative

On September 9, 2010 Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard announced the first batch of projects in the city's RebuildIndy initiative.

The $55 million package of street, sidewalk and bridge projects is spread around the city, with many side streets selected for resurfacing as well as some major roads. Ballard also announced a $2 million set of projects that will improve traffic flow and pedestrian access in targeted areas along Michigan Road from Cold Springs Road to 86th Street—a stretch with few sidewalks—and along 71st Street and Westlane Road in the same area. The projects kick off an aggressive infrastructure improvement program. The mayor's office anticipates spending more than $500 million on such projects in coming years, largely funded by proceeds from the pending sale of the city's water and sewer systems to Citizens Energy Group, a nonprofit trust, and stimulus money. The utilities transfer is awaiting approval from the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission after winning the City-County Council's OK earlier this year. Among its selling points for Ballard is the money to fund infrastructure improvements—though Ballard has said the city's needs are so great that the money won't cover them all. [14]

On August 19, the City of Indianapolis announced it has received $13.8 million more than originally expected from a bond issue secured by the pending sale of its water and sewer utilities to Citizens Energy Group. The bond proceeds of $153.8 million compare with $140 million originally anticipated as one of the chunks of money from selling the utilities. The money will be spent on street, bridge and sidewalk projects, under the city’s “RebuildIndy” program. That would bring total proceeds from selling the utilities—before subtracting fees and other costs related to the sale—to $504.4 million, from $490.6 anticipated when the City-County Council approved the sale. [15]

Office of Sustainability

In October 2008, Mayor Greg Ballard announced the creation of the City's first Office of Sustainability and unveiled the SustainIndy initiative. The community-wide plan is focused on taking local action to be more environmentally conscious. Kären Haley leads the office.[16]

In August 2010, Mayor Greg Ballard and the Office of Sustainability announced a program that provides incentives for property owners and developers to renovate or construct new buildings in a sustainable manner. The program allows for projects built after August 1 to receive up to a 50 percent rebate on building permit fees associated with the green project. The incentive encourages building owners and developers to integrate sustainable design techniques and practices into building projects.[17]

On December 12, 2012, Mayor Ballard signed Executive Order #6, making Indianapolis the first major city in the United States to commit to the conversion of its entire municipal non-police fleet to electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles. The mayor also outlined a plan to convert the entire city government vehicle fleet to post-oil technology by 2025. Ballard cited concern over the compromises to national security created by national oil dependence as the reasoning behind this step in energy security. Ballard stated that his team was working with automakers to have the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department serve as technical advisors and test drivers to accelerate the creation of the first plug-in hybrid police vehicle that meets the needs of a modern urban police force. Such a fleet could save up to $10 million per year.[18]


  • The Ballard Rules: Small Unit Leadership. Bloomington, IN: Authorhouse, ISBN 978-1-4208-3222-8

See also


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Becker, Gretchen. "Ballard says he will keep the city moving forward". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Mayor-elect man about town: phone calls, handshakes, hugs". Retrieved 2012-06-22. 
  5. ^ "Mayor-elect is confident of his ability, leadership". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c The Marine who would be mayor |
  7. ^ "WTHR – Indianapolis News and Weather – Peterson's fundraising far outweighs competition". October 19, 2007. Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ Zoom, Billy (November 6, 2007). "Bad News for Indianapolis Democrats".  
  10. ^ Ballard grabs upset win in mayoral race |
  11. ^
  12. ^ Murray, Jon (November 9, 2011). "Kennedy concedes Indy mayoral race to Ballard".  
  13. ^ Julie Loncich Fox59 4:40 pm EDT, June 2, 2010 (June 2, 2010). "Rebuilding Indianapolis: $425 million could be spent on roads, sidewalks & abandoned houses". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  14. ^ Murray, Jon (April 19, 2012). "North Marion County | Indianapolis Star". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  15. ^ Chris O'Malley. "City lands $13.8M more than expected from water deal | Indianapolis Business Journal". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  16. ^ Inside INdiana Report. "Indianapolis Creates Office of Sustainability – Newsroom – Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  17. ^ "living08posts | Indianapolis Star |". Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  18. ^ "City Fleet and Energy Security". The Official Website of the City of Indianapolis and Marion County. Mayor's Office. Retrieved July 1, 2013. 

External links

  • Official mayoral site
  • Campaign website
  • Entries on YouTube
Political offices
Preceded by
Bart Peterson
Mayor of Indianapolis
Succeeded by
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