WACO, Texas — Waco Deputy City Manger Bradley Ford was promoted to the city manager position May 23 after a unanimous vote of approval from Waco City Council.

Ford will step into the city manager role later this year as current City Manger Wiley Stem III announced his retirement earlier in the month. The council called a special meeting to address the topic and went into a closed executive session to consider Ford for the position. 

"Bradley has overwhelmed the council with his ability to deal with the complex issues presented to the city while fostering positive relationships with community partners.," Waco Mayor Kyle Deaver said in a release. "He has proven his passion for the city and his ability to deal with difficult issues and carrying out the council's goals and objectives. We have been fortunate to have outstanding city managers in the past and I'm confident Bradley will continue that legacy."

Soon-to-retire City Manager Stem also commented on Ford's appointment.

"When I appointed him deputy city manager I knew in my heart that if the council agreed, he would be able to continue the work of the council and keep the city moving in the right direction," Stem said. "I'm excited for him and the future of Waco."

Ford graduated with a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Texas at Tyler in 2003 and masters in city and regional planning from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2007. He came to Waco in 2017 after working for the cities of Fort Worth and Burleson in the areas of planning, economic and community development and serving as deputy city manager in Burleson.

"I have worked with many leaders in my career that have invested time and energy into my development," Ford said. "The most recent example of that is Wiley Stem. It will be a true honor to follow Wiley in leading our city family.

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