Uber Hosts Mayors From Across U.S. To Talk Smarter Cities

Last updated: 7 Dec 2015

The 83rd annual U.S. Conference of Mayors was recently held in San Francisco. Uber was excited to participate and welcome many of the nation’s mayors to our home city. As part of the events — we hosted 150 guests at Uber headquarters, including nearly 40 mayors to talk with them about how we can work together to make cities better and put more people to work. San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, who served as one of the conference’s co-hosts, was also in attendance to welcome the mayors to Uber

Lee also introduced David Plouffe, Uber’s Chief Advisor. Plouffe delivered a keynote address to the guests and answered questions from the mayors, who were visiting with local tech companies that afternoon. Plouffe covered some basics about Uber for those guests who hail from areas not yet served by the platform, which is currently in cities covering about 70% of the U.S.

Much of the talk centered on the powerful economic opportunities engine that Uber has become, with more than 20,000 drivers on the platform in big cities like San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles. David also highlighted that the phenomenon extends to smaller, newer Uber markets, like Portland which launched in April, which already has 1,300 Uber driver-partners.

David also recapped the progress of ridesharing legislation across fifty-one U.S. jurisdictions, including 23 states as well as cities ranging from Seattle to New Orleans. These places have passed regulations that make ridesharing explicitly legal, covering insurance requirements and the like. Those forward-thinking cities and states put an ever-increasing part of the country under clear, modern regulatory frameworks that provide riders and drivers with more choice than ever.

Uber’s time with the mayors wasn’t limited to David’s presentation. Todd Bowers, the director of UberMILITARY, spoke to a group of mayors at a breakfast meeting where he reflected on his own time in the service and the challenges of returning to the civilian workforce. He told the attendees about the thousands of veterans and their family members who collectively are earning more than $1 million every week as Uber driver-partners.

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Photo credit: U.S. Conference of Mayors

Bowers remarks for the mayors came during a busy weekend for himself. The day before the mayors came to headquarters, Uber hosted dozens of members of Student Veterans of America. In a 2-day event, they learned how to create business plans and make a successful transition back into civilian life.

With both the mayors and the student veterans the conversation centered on the value of flexible employment opportunities and the role of governments and technology companies like Uber working together to move the conversation forward.