PB mayor among 10 ‘Women of Influence’

Pine Bluff Mayor Debe Hollingsworth is among 10 “Women of Influence” selected and featured by the statewide publication Arkansas Business.

Arkansas Business Editor Gwen Moritz, a former Commercial writer, said the listing is not a “contest or a competition,” and the publication isn’t suggesting that the 1o are the state’s only influential women. Nominations were not solicited. “Instead, these ‘Women of Influence’ were selected by the Arkansas Business editorial staff based on our familiarity with them and their spheres of influence,” Moritz said.

“We consider these women to be among the most influential in their fields in 2013 and we believe their stories are valuable reminders of the important roles that women play in our state’s economy,” Moritz continued.

In an article by George Waldon, Hollingsworth stated that she decided to run for mayor in 2011.

“I realized that I was at a point in my life where I wanted to be part of a solution,” she said, referencing problems that the city faced at the time. “Our city was not advancing the way I thought it should. When I offered suggestions, it fell on deaf ears.”

Waldon outlined Hollingsworth’s professional background as a state bank examiner, investment adviser/stock broker and private businesswoman with Hoover Oil Company.

Hollingsworth, elected in November as the city’s first female mayor since Carolyn Robinson won the post in 1984, believes she was voted into office with what Waldon described as a “mandate for radical change.” which he said Hollingsworth initiated by firing former Police Chief Brenda Davis-Jones on her first day as mayor.

“I am not a politician,” the article quotes Hollingsworth as saying. “I have four years to get the things done I want to get done. I don’t even think about re-election. Worrying about re-election can influence a major decision you need to make in the present.”