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Sheila Dixon

What Rawlings-Blake did well

What Rawlings-Blake did well

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's tenure started off strong. She provided a clean break from the scandalous end of the Sheila Dixon administration, and she set about tackling a series of unglamorous but vexing problems with no-nonsense efficiency. But time and circumstance magnified what initially seemed like minor faults — the detachment and dismissiveness with which she snapped "don't call me Stephanie" to a resident at a public meeting morphed into petty feuds with other local officials over things like the municipal phone system, and eventually into a leadership blackout when rioting spread across West Baltimore.

We believe Ms. Rawlings-Blake made the right...