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Triplett Exits Board Of Aldermen To Praise From Colleagues

Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio

Just three weeks after welcoming a new member to its ranks, the St. Louis Board of Aldermen gathered to say goodbye to another one.

Kacie Starr Triplett, the 6th Ward alderwoman, is stepping down to  take a position with the Behavioral Health Network of Greater St. Louis, where she'll coordinate a new initiative looking at gaps for services for the homeless and mentally ill in the region.

Triplett has been an outspoken advocate for the homeless at the board - she once was the only alderman to vote against a budget because it did not fully fund the Affordable Housing Commission.

But her predecessor in the 6th Ward, board president Lewis Reed, said Triplett was good at balancing the needs of everyone in her ward, which stretches from Fox Park to Washington Ave.

"You have to figure out how you're going to manage the needs of the homeless population with the needs of the more affluent folks that have now moved into that district," Reed said. "One of the things that I was very proud of Kacie is that when she took over, she took that thing head-on."

Ald. Sam Moore, from the 4th Ward, shared a small office with Triplett, who is one of the youngest aldermen and has an active social media presence.

"I had papers stacked high on my desk, the old antiquated way, and she kept telling me, 'you're going to learn how to do this computer,'" Moore said. "Stubborn male chauvinist, didn't want to do it - and now I'm Android man," he said, in reference to Google's phone operation system.

The city's Democratic committee will pick Triplett's likely successor, and already one political legacy has tossed his hat in the ring. Damon Jones - the 6th Ward committeeman, and the son of former state Senator Robin Wright-Jones and former alderman Mike Jones - plans to seek the nomination.

Follow Rachel Lippmann on Twitter: @rlippmann

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.

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