TOP50STL Person of the Week: Jack Dorsey
I don’t really understand Twitter. I signed up for an account for the first time last year and I still haven’t really been able to get into it. There’s just a lot going on and it’s hard for me to drown out all the noise. But, even though it’s not for me, I still want the company to succeed because the founder is a native of Saint Louis.
Twitter has made Jack Dorsey a billionaire and I think he’s someone who could have a huge impact on the city of St. Louis if he wants to. In fact, he already has. Recently, he fully funded the wish lists for teachers in schools in St. Louis and all across Missouri. Twitter just celebrated its 10th anniversary and it was reported that #Ferguson was the most influential hashtag over the last decade. It’s clear that Twitter and Jack Dorsey have made an impact on St. Louis.
I watched a 60 minutes interview with Jack a few years ago where he expressed interest in being the mayor of New York City. Really? New York City? Obviously being the mayor of NYC would be a thrilling position. It’s probably one of the top ten economies in the world, but I wonder whether he would ever consider becoming the mayor of Saint Louis. Now, there’s a challenge!
I’ve been saying for a while that I think the rejuvenation of St Louis may finally be at hand due to the entrepreneurial spirit and energy flowing out of places like Cortex in the Central West End and downtown at TREX. Dorsey has already made an impact by bringing Square’s headquarters to Cortex.
But, here’s a what-if scenario. What if Jack Dorsey ran for mayor of St. Louis? What if he ran for St. Louis County Executive too? (I’m sure there’s a law stating that you can’t hold two elected offices at the same time but I’m working with hypotheticals here). Because he’s prominent not only in St. Louis but internationally and a billionaire, I think he could win both elections and unite the city and county.
Take a look at the insane level of bureaucracy we have in Saint Louis and imagine that through the eyes of not only a CEO, but a CEO that truly values and understands technology and how it can help institutions evolve. St. Louis needs to snap out of the doldrums of stagnation we’ve been stuck for decades. I think a Jack Dorsey as mayor (and/or County Executive) could be just the big splash we need to make things happen. It would certainly grab some attention and it sounds like Jack already has some political aspirations if he has the NYC gig on his radar. Maybe we can put St Louis in his head. I know; I’ll send him a tweet!