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Keynote Remarks: Eric Adams, Mayor of New York City

Eric Adams, Mayor, City of New York

Welcoming the crowd to the Big Apple, New York City Mayor Eric Adams opened the 2022 Annual Summit by reminiscing about his childhood summers in Alabama. On his relatives’ farm, he learned to think creatively about solving big problems. He then drew a connection to the present by suggesting that solving today’s big problems requires that same creative approach.   

Global problems need global thinkers, Mayor Adams continued. When leaders remain in their silos, they cannot access the broad set of ideas necessary to generate successful approaches. Furthermore, leaders need to lean into their discomforts, as solving problems requires facing them honestly. Adams noted that with its large population of residents with international family connections, New York is the “capital” of many countries. Facing problems together requires face-to-face interaction, cooperation, and voices from across the spectrum. Adams concluded his talk with a joking nudge for attendees to spend their money in New York City.

Key takeaways & next steps:

  • Today’s expansive problems require creative stakeholders who are willing to break down walls and face challenges together. 
  • Leaders must lean into their discomforts and face problems with transparency. Change is not possible without an honest accounting of the facts.

“If we’re going to solve global problems, we’re going to need global people at the table.”


Eric Adams, Mayor of New York City