He always vowed to improve the relationship between communities and the NYPD, but the last year was a trying one for Bill de Blasio.
Last spring, New Yorkers and police officers violently clashed in city streets during days of mass demonstrations following the killing of George Floyd.
Police vehicles were set on fire and officers rammed through demonstrators.
Initially, the mayor mostly sided with the NYPD.
“I do not like one bit that video with the vehicles," he said last May. "I looked at those videos, I saw people converging on the police vehicle. I saw people throwing things at the police vehicle. That is not peaceful protests, so let's not kid ourselves.”
De Blasio’s stance outraged many activists.
The Occupy City Hall and Defund the Police movements pushed for cuts in the police budgets and for more accountability.
And in June, some funds were diverted to other initiatives and de Blasio unveiled a new system for disciplining police officers.
A later investigation concluded that the NYPD response was flawed.
In December, the mayor apologized: "I'm taking my responsibility for mistakes that were made and decisions that turned out to be wrong."
Still, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea told investigators his officers had done a phenomenal job.
On the first anniversary of Floyd's death, when asked about lessons learned, de Blasio listed his set of reforms.
"That's why we are intensifying investments in cure violence movement crisis management system, that's why we are bringing the community into the selection of local precincts commanders," de Blasio said.
Meanwhile, the mayor has had to balance the calls for reform, with concerns about a rise in shootings.
With the race to succeed him in full swing, the mayor acknowledged much more work needs to be done.
"But we gotta keep changing the culture. We've gotta bring the community into the work of policing much more deeply." de Blasio said.
It’s a job his successor will have to confront in January.