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Mike Bloomberg Headshot. Credit: Bloomberg Philanthropies
Shortly after assuming office as mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg announced a sensible plan to consolidate all of the city's information and complaint lines in a single centralized 311 call center. At an event in the spring of 2002, Bloomberg introduced the commissioner of the city's Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications—the man responsible for the system's implementation: "Gino Menchini," he said, to hearty applause, "who will not be here next year if 311 is not up and running."

[Geek alert: In 1960, Bloomberg he was active in the Medford High School debating society—and was president of the Slide Rule Club.]

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