Athens Mayor Dora Bakoyannis, credited for helping tidy up Greece's crowded capital before the Olympic games here last year, has won an international mayors' award, organizers of the annual competition announced Monday.
The 51-year-old conservative, the city's first female mayor, was named winner of the 2005 World Mayor Award by the London-based City Mayors organization, which held the Internet poll.
The Athens mayor beat Canada's longest serving mayor, 84-year-old Hazel McCallion, of Mississauga, Ontario, who has held office since 1978. Placed third was Guatemala City Mayor Alvaro Arzu, the Central American country's former president. He is credited with helping transition efforts following the 1960-96 civil war that left 200,000 people dead.
Greater Athens has a population of about 4 million people, while the City of Athens has fewer than 1 million residents. Edi Rama, mayor of Tirana won in 2004 for radical changes to the Albanian capital, including the resurfacing of potholed streets and repainting grim Communist-era buildings, AP reports.