Keep challenges in sight as city celebrates success, says Roanoke Mayor

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Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea says teamwork is paying dividends for the city, but Thursday morning he said Roanoke cannot lose sight of its continuing challenges.

Lea delivered his first State-of-the-City address, speaking to members of the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce at the Hotel Roanoke.

He highlighted recent successes, such as the announcement bringing Deschutes brewery to the city.

But he also said the city must continue to address persistent problems, including homelessness, drug abuse and poverty.

"Roanoke’s population includes a significant number of people who live in poverty," Lea said during his prepared remarks. "Part of our responsibility as leaders is to invest in our community and do what we can to reverse that. That's important."

And Lea told the audience of business leaders, the city must do everything it can to make sure that all of its citizens share in Roanoke's success.