On Tuesday, December 12, 2023, during the Temecula City Council meeting, 2023 Mayor Pro Tem James "Stew" Stewart was appointed unanimously by the Council to serve as Mayor of Temecula for 2024.
Temecula's Incoming Mayor James "Stew" Stewart was first elected to serve on the City Council in 2016 and re-elected again in 2020. As a local business owner and resident since 1991, Stewart states, "From its humble beginnings to the vibrant, bustling City we know today, Temecula has become a shining example of opportunity and I am deeply honored to accept the responsibilities as Mayor."
Stewart is a well-known advocate for public safety within the City, reducing traffic congestion, and prioritizing prudent fiscal decisions. He is supportive of career and technical education (CTE) workforce programs that can equip youth with skills to successfully enter the job market, as well as preserving Temecula's historical past, and creating new traditions through events and activities that bring the community together.
Stewart becomes Mayor effective January 1, 2024 for the calendar year. He adds, "Temecula's charm lies in its hometown welcoming atmosphere with over 40 picturesque parks, safe neighborhoods, beautifully manicured roadways and trails, community events, parades, an entrepreneurial environment, and an abundance of amenities to enjoy anchored by historical Old Town, Vail Ranch, world class wineries and Pechanga. It is this very essence that makes Temecula special, and as Mayor I am motivated to preserve and enhance these qualities for every resident, business and visitor."
The Temecula City Council also unanimously selected Council Member Brenden Kalfus to serve as 2024 Mayor Pro Tem assuming mayoral duties in the event of Mayor Stewart’s absence. Council Members Zak Schwank and Jessica Alexander were appointed respectively as 2024 President and Vice President for the Temecula Community Services District. Council Committee and Board assignments are anticipated to occur in early 2024.