Leirion Gaylor Baird entered the mayor's office in 2019 as the first parent of school-age children elected to the position in 20 years.
In the early weeks, the new mayor talked publicly of how she relished the end of the campaign for her three children, who would get to see her a little more.
But the pandemic has put city policymaking under a microscope — touching every resident, youth and old — and during her news briefings, the 49-year-old mayor has talked about her own family as she stressed the sacrifices necessary to control the virus.
The latest example came last week as Gaylor Baird and Health Director Pat Lopez discussed the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department's unpopular decision to temporarily suspend youth sports.
The rampant coronavirus spread and growing hospitalization numbers left local public health officials few options but to target gatherings, the mayor said in explaining the plan to shut down youth sports for three weeks.
Gaylor Baird said she and her family can relate to the frustration associated with no games, no practices.
The abrupt end to in-school learning last spring meant no traditional senior year memories for her oldest child, and a yearbook without any signatures sits in her house and serves as a reminder of that, she said.
"I’m living this too, and I feel the losses, and I share your grief," Gaylor Baird said.
The last Lincoln mayor who parented school-age children while in office was Don Wesely. Both Chris Beutler and Coleen Seng had grown children when they led the city.
There was no pandemic-level crisis during Wesely's four years as mayor, from 1999-2003.
But he would often be consulted by school officials before any snow day decision, and once his children figured that out, they began lobbying him, he said.
Actively parenting while deciding matters related to schools and other policies impacting children brings those issues closer to home.
"It affects you," Wesely said.
Out in the cold
Monday night's two-hour petition signing event held outside of City Hall was a little brisk for those seeking to remove the mayor and four Lincoln City Council members.
Samuel Lyon, one of the LNK Recall organizers, told the City Council about 300 people showed up.
"Many of them were not happy that the city notified us this morning that (the council's) constituents were not allowed to sign the petitions inside in the warm," Lyon said during the council's public comment session.
Lincoln Police Officer Brian Hoefer, who serves as the council's sergeant at arms, sent the LNK Recall group an email Monday morning informing the group of a resolution that prohibits signature gathering inside the County-City Building.
Resolution 114, passed by the Lincoln-Lancaster County Public Building Commission in 2008, also prohibits picketing, leafleting and soliciting charitable donations inside the common areas of any building maintained by the commission.
None of the current council members served on the commission in 2008.
However, petition circulators often camp out in front of the steps to the Hall of Justice and gather signatures.
This summer they also sought to capitalize on the socially distanced lines extending across the parking lot of the county's Department of Motor Vehicles office at 625 N. 46th St.
LNK Recall organizers have said they plan to host signing events at supportive businesses, and as of Tuesday afternoon, that list included only Madsen's Bowling & Billiards, according to the group's website.
Their petitions come due Dec. 23.
City Council members Monday extended the city's freeze on new applications for transitional living facilities, but only through January.
Earlier this month, the council passed new regulations for the facilities, rules that have been criticized by some residents for lacking necessary oversight and safeguards.
In considering a moratorium extension into next summer, Councilman Bennie Shobe successfully convinced his peers to hold off applications only through the end of January.
He believes the delay will allow state lawmakers to take up action to address concerns but not so much time as to downplay the urgency, he said.
"We should know by the end of January whether (the Legislature) plans to seriously address these issues or not," Shobe said.
* Election Systems and Software — The Omaha-based company that supplies the ballot-tabulating machines used in Lancaster County elections, according to Election Commissioner Dave Shively, in case the 2020 presidential election made you curious.
* Ron Caldi — Lincoln Transportation and Utilities' new assistant director of transportation. He fills the vacancy created when Lonnie Burklund left the department for the JEO Consulting Group. Caldi, a civil engineer, comes to Lincoln from Florida, where he has worked in state and local government, as well as in the private sector.
* Thankful — For the nurses gowning up and working uncomfortably and selflessly during this pandemic. Your sacrifices personally and professionally may not always be seen, but history will remember your dedicated service. Florence Nightingale would be proud.
LINCOLN'S PANDEMIC SCENE
Photos: The scene in Lincoln with much of city shut down
City Council distancing
Gameday empty Saturday
Thank you Bryan West
No fans allowed
Volleyball social distancing
Boo at the Zoo
Downtown mask art
Marching band competition
East Campus proposed budget cuts
No Football Saturday
UNL in-person class
Farmers Market influencers
Weeping Water vs. Fillmore Central/Exeter-Milligan
First day of middle school
First day of school
Pius X volleyball practice
House of Flowers delivery
City Council BLM protest
Rally and hearing
Lancaster County Super Fair
LPS board meeting
Meatpacking workers rally
Lincoln Northeast graduation
Gov. Ricketts address Legislature
Masked Archie the Mammoth
First Jury Trial in Four Months
Lincoln Community Playhouse
The Kindler Hotel
Garth Brooks Drive-In Concert
Urban Air Adventure Park
Gere Branch Library
Music on the Move
Bars Opening in Lincoln
LPS Teachers Retirement
Holmes Lake Manor Horse Visit
Lancaster County Courthouse
Church Social Distancing
Children of Smithfield
Parkview Christian Teacher Appreciation Day
Lincoln Christian 2020 Seniors
Test Nebraska site
Drive-Thru Career Fair
Center for People in Need food distribution
Masks For Truckers
Teacher and Staff Parade
Virtual City Council
Good Friday Music
Masks on a walk
Watch: A timelapse of the mural at Saro Cider
Watch: Hand sanitizer rolls off Innovation Campus assembly line
No fun here
Tower Square sign
WATCH: Celebrating a birthday with a parade
Simpsons in the windows
Drive-thru COVID-19 testing
UNL Beekeeping virtual class
Lincoln Lutheran Online Teaching
Blue for public health
Basketball without fans
Thanksgiving to go
Socially distant Santa
Christmas tree demand
Basketball fans reduced
Mike Hilgers at Legislature's First Day
Zoo Bar membership
New high school
Biking in snow
Reach the writer at 402-473-2657 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Twitter @LJSRileyJohnson.