Robert Lewis Jr. will decide on Boston mayoral bid ‘over the next 48 hours’

Robert Lewis Jr., a veteran of the Boston Foundation and Menino administration, plans to decide whether to run for mayor within the next 48 hours, he told the Globe late Wednesday.

Lewis, who grew up in East Boston and South End, left the Boston Foundation earlier this year to found The BASE, an initiative aimed at constructing a sports and academic academy in the city. Prior to the Boston Foundation, where he oversaw program initiatives, Lewis worked as executive director of the Boston Center for Youth and Families and as vice president of City Year.

Lewis said he was still in the exploratory stage, describing his interest as growing rapidly in the last 48 hours, but could capitalize on two current vacancies in the field. Neither an African American nor a candidate with a strong private-sector profile has emerged.

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“I would jump into this because I could lead the city, and I don’t want anyone to think of me as the candidate of color,” he said.

“As an African American, one of the things that I’ve been able to do, when you take a look at the organizations that I’ve run, I’ve been able to bridge the gap between the business sector and the community sector, as well as folks in academia,” he said.

Lewis said his career has revolved around raising private funds for community enterprises, a background he said he could leverage in public office. His decision, he said, will come soon.

“I feel like, somewhere over the next 48 hours, I’ve got to make this decision,” he said.