LIFESTYLE

Where are they now? Greg Lashutka, 51st mayor of Columbus (1992-2000)

Anthony Dominic

Columbus came to know Greg Lashutka as a standout tight end under Ohio State coach Woody Hayes, then later as city attorney. As mayor, he steered Columbus through the 1990s, a decade in which the city, in many respects, became the city we know today.

We had a spirit that was kind of contagious. There was an anxiousness in the air that maybe we were playing above our weight a little bit, but we were ready to grow a couple sizes bigger.

We were deficient in police officers. That's the only thing I ran on-to add 360 more police officers. The area between Victorian Village and Italian Village was a major wasteland, largely because people didn't have confidence in safety. Way down deep, I was hoping we would attract some kind of facility, and the Blue Jackets and the Crew came through a united effort of the community.

Being mayor is the best job I ever had, and it's an honor to serve the public, but there's also more to life. The first year [after my second term], yeah, maybe a little withdrawal, but you have to let it pass on. I went to Nationwide and was senior vice president of corporate relations. I left there in '08 and have been in semi-retirement.

I think, with Columbus, we're going to see unstoppable attraction. We're going to have to work to retain the high cultural values we've had generation to generation. Because it's individuals who make up a city, and we have got great citizens who want to live here and want a fair shake. -As told to Anthony Dominic