Karl Foster Dean (born September 20, 1955) is an American politician who served as the 68th Mayor of Nashville, Tennessee from 2007 to 2015. A member of the Democratic Party, he previously served as Nashville's Director of Law under Mayor Bill Purcell from 1999 to 2007. In 1990, 1994 and 1998, he was elected the city's public defender. Dean, an attorney by occupation, is currently an Adjunct Professor of Law at Vanderbilt University Law School. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia University in 1978 and a Juris Doctor from Vanderbilt University in 1981. His campaign message for Mayor of Nashville focused on improving education, public safety and economic development saying "it's all connected." During Dean's first year in office, he reworked the arrangement between Metro and the Nashville Predators in order to keep the team in Nashville. During Dean's first term, he faced two major challenges: the Great Recession and the 2010 Tennessee floods. During his two terms in office, Dean transformed Downtown Nashville by adding a new minor league baseball stadium, a riverfront amphitheater and park and a new convention center dubbed Music City Center. Dean was friendly towards business and often used tax incentives to lure companies to Nashville. He is also involved in conservationist efforts of historical areas such as Music Row through his involvement with Music Industry Coalition. He helped preserve historic sites such as RCA Studio A. In 2017, Dean declared his candidacy for Governor of Tennessee in the 2018 election. In the first three months of the campaign, Dean raised $1.2 million and spent $200,000; he went on to win the Democratic nomination on August 2, 2018 and advanced to the general election. Dean lost the election to businessman Bill Lee.