By Sue Lindmeier, Assistant to Mayor Gordon
Mayor Gordon enjoys a "meet and greet" with a young panda at the Panda Research Base in Chengdu
At the invitation of Sister Cities International, the World Cities Scientific Development Alliance and the Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction of China, Mayor Gordon and Scott Krushak, Emergency Management Coordinator for the City of Phoenix attended the 2011 World Cities Scientific Development Forum from August 9 – 12, 2011.
Mayor Gordon delivered a key note speech addressing the importance for cities and nations to stand together when emergencies strike. He expressed the importance of communication and personal relationships to transcend distance, culture and language. Mayor Gordon stressed that communication is the lynchpin that binds together all aspects of emergency preparedness.
A personal meeting with Mayor Ge Honglin was an important part of the Mayor’s visit. Mayor Gordon presented him with a key to the City of Phoenix letting him know he is always welcome to our city.
Mayor Gordon was joined in Chengdu by our great friends from Sister City Ennis, Ireland. Pictured with Mayor Gordon at the World Cities Scientific Development Conference are Ennis Deputy Mayor Mary Howard and Ennis Town Manager Ger Dollard.
Mayor Gordon was pleasantly overwhelmed at the hospitality of the people of our Sister City, Chengdu. From the moment he arrived he was treated with utmost respect and consideration. They provided beautiful meals for him and he very much enjoyed the cuisine. Walking through the streets he was impressed by the level of cleanliness and the low crime rate. Even during the late evening hours, the city was safe and orderly.
A highlight of the visit took place at the Panda Research Base. Spending time with the Pandas was incredible. Mayor Gordon was able to have a personal meet and greet with a Panda - a visit which is reserved only for dignitaries and Jackie Chan of course. This was an amazing experience for Mayor Gordon which allowed him to truly see why the Panda is so precious to the people of China.
The visit was a tremendous success and strengthened the bond between the City of Phoenix, AZ and Chengdu, China.