Last summer, in line with our Community Compact, we announced the formation of our Mayoral Advisory Board to provide guidance on how Airbnb can continue strengthening partnerships with cities around the globe. Today, we are thrilled to announce that former Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake will join the Airbnb Mayoral Advisory Board.
In this role, Rawlings-Blake will advise Airbnb on how we can best continue to work with people and cities across the US and around the world. She will join the Mayoral Advisory Board’s ongoing efforts in supporting economic development in communities, empowering women, strengthening diversity through minority host recruitment and our internal diversity initiatives, and working closely with our Anti-Discrimination Task Force.
As Mayor of Baltimore, Rawlings-Blake worked tirelessly to grow the city’s economy and foster new entrepreneurial initiatives. Under her leadership, the unemployment rate in the city fell from over 11 percent when she took office in February of 2010 to 6.1 percent in October of 2016. According to state labor statistics, the city’s economy added nearly 15,000 jobs during her tenure.
“In my six years as Mayor of the City of Baltimore, I saw firsthand the positive impact that tourism and visitors have on a community. While I have left office, promoting economic development that helps the middle class remains one of my top priorities. That’s why I am excited to join Airbnb’s Mayoral Advisory Board, and eager to work with Mayors and other electeds around the world to ensure cities can benefit from Airbnb,” Rawlings-Blake says.
Since launching our Community Compact and Mayoral Advisory Board, we have learned valuable lessons on how best to partner with cities and remain committed to:
- Treating every city personally and helping ensure our community pays its fair share of hotel and tourist taxes
- Being transparent with our data and information with cities to help them understand local home sharing activity
- In cities where there is a shortage of long-term housing, working with our community to prevent short-term rentals from impacting the availability of long-term housing by ensuring hosts agree to a policy of listing only permanent homes on a short-term basis
We look forward to working with Mayor Rawlings-Blake and the Mayoral Advisory Board on upholding these commitments and collaborating with the cities and communities that Airbnb hosts call home.
Mayor Rawlings-Blake was born and raised in Baltimore, and served as the 49th Mayor of Baltimore from 2010 to 2016, only the second woman to hold that office. In addition to her service as Mayor, she served as Secretary of the Democratic National Committee and President of the United States Conference of Mayors.