Compiled by Mary Jane Smetanka and Nicole Norfleet:
Clyde Turner, executive director of Sabathani Community Center, said Rybak was supportive of the center and the families it works with. "He fought for good neighborhoods and to bring down crime, for the best education and for housing for low-income families,” Turner said. “He was the kind of mayor to draw the community together and he was comfortable in working with different ethnic groups.
U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar: “R.T. has brought an infectious optimism and enthusiasm about Minneapolis to the mayor’s office. Whether he is rallying citizens at a neighborhood meeting in North Minneapolis or crowd surfing at First Avenue, with R.T. you always feel everything and anything is possible.”
St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman: "“The City of Minneapolis, the Minneapolis-Saint Paul region and our state are better off because of Mayor Rybak's leadership. Whether we were developing the Metro Business Plan, working to implement the Thinc Green initiative, or we were planning for the Green Line, the largest infrastructure project in the history of our state, both Minneapolis and Saint Paul came together to find ways we could work together for the benefit of our region. I join the rest of our community when I say he will be missed and that we wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors, whatever they may be. At the very least, I hope his stage diving days at First Ave. haven’t come to an end.”
Minneapolis School Board Chairman Alberto Monserrate said he appreciated Rybak’s involvement with AchieveMpls, the nonprofit fundraising arm for Minneapolis Public Schools, and with initiatives like the “I Want You Back” campaign to draw dropouts back to school.
“I’ve seen him, especially in the last few years, engaged in Minneapolis Public Schools,” Monserrate said. “We both shared the goals of increasing achievement for all our students and reducing the achievement gap…. I’m hoping the next mayor will continue that collaboration, because we need that continuity.”