About Teresa

Mayor Teresa Tomlinson was elected as the 69th Mayor of Columbus, Georgia on November 30, 2010 with 68% of the vote. On January 3, 2011, she was sworn in as the city's first female mayor. On May 20, 2014 she was re-elected to a second term with 63% of the vote, making her the first Mayor since the city's consolidation in 1971 to win re-election in a contested race. She has five times been named to Georgia Trend's 100 Most Influential Georgians, and she holds a National Security Secret Clearance with the Department of Defense.

Mayor Tomlinson has led Columbus and its city/county government through a time of innovative transformation, reforming its budget in the face of declining revenues, improving city services, revitalizing blighted and under-utilized neighborhoods, reducing crime, increasing inclusive citizen engagement and setting a vision for unprecedented vibrancy in the state’s second largest city and the nation’s sixteenth largest consolidated government.

During her tenure Columbus, Georgia:

In 2015, after the startling announcement of the potential closure of her undergraduate alma mater, Sweet Briar College in Virginia, Mayor Tomlinson joined with thousands of alumnae across the nation to raise $28.5 million in 110 days and convert over $12 million of that to cash in 70 days in order to fulfill the terms of a court approved settlement, which saved the college and kept the doors open, where it thrives today. She was a primary witness in the court case that was successful before the Virginia Supreme Court and was involved in discussions with the Virginia Attorney General’s Office regarding the saving of the college. Mayor Tomlinson delivered the 2015 Commencement Speech, thought to be the College’s last; but, instead, the speech became an endorsement for liberal arts education, an indictment of the failed leadership of the past and a rallying point for the effort to save the college. Mayor Tomlinson is currently the Chairwomen of the Board of Directors of Sweet Briar College.

Abbreviated Biography to be used for Introductions -


   Mayor Teresa Tomlinson was elected as the 69th Mayor of Columbus, Georgia on November 30, 2010 with 68% of the vote. On January 3, 2011, she was sworn in as the city's first female mayor. On May 20, 2014 she was re-elected to a second term with 63% of the vote, making her the first Mayor since the city's consolidation in 1971 to win re-election in a contested race. She has FIVE times been named to Georgia Trend's 100 Most Influential Georgians, and she holds a National Security Secret Clearance with the Department of Defense. In 2015, Mayor Tomlinson, together with other alumnae, led the effort to save her undergraduate alma mater, Sweet Briar College in Virginia. Today, the college thrives and Mayor Tomlinson serves as the Chairwoman of college’s the Board of Directors.

Mayor Teresa Tomlinson moved to Columbus in 1994 from Atlanta and married Wade H. (Trip) Tomlinson, who was raised in Columbus. For 16 years she practiced with the law firm of Pope, McGlamry, Kilpatrick, Morrison and Norwood, LLC, where she specialized in complex litigation and was the firm's first female partner. She served from 2006-2010 as Executive Director of MidTown, Inc., a non-profit community renewal organization. Mayor Tomlinson is a 1983 graduate of Chamblee High School in Atlanta, Georgia (where she was inducted into the Chamblee High School Hall of Fame in 2015), a 1987 graduate of Sweet Briar College, in Virginia (where she was a 2011 Distinguished Alumnae), and a 1991 graduate of Emory University School of Law, in Atlanta.