Councillor Kevin Cranston was elected unopposed at the first annual meeting of the council.
He replaces Amanda Moriarty who has become deputy mayor after serving three years as mayor.
Councillor Cranston was first co-opted on to the council in 1997. Representing Central Ward the 63-year-old is married with two grown children and works as an environment and quality consultant.
He was town mayor from 2004 to 2007.
A passionate supporter of the Play Gloucestershire schemes in the town, Councillor Cranston has vowed to promote the concerns of young people.
“I would also continue the good work to see the Neighbourhood Development Plan come to fruition as I believe it is important in the campaign to maintain the viability of our town centre as a shopping and commercial area,” he said.
“Over the next year I hope to see the continuation of the resurfacing of the High Street and look forward to the completion of the Canal through Stroud later this year and in due course seeing it linked up to the rest of the national network at Saul.”
Eight new councillors have been elected to the town council. They are: Alice Campbell (Central), Val Lock (Slade), Mike Lovell (Slade), Susie Roberts (Valley), Geoffrey Andrews (Farmhill/Paganhill), Vanessa Price (Farmhill/Paganhill), Paul Flinn (Uplands) and Chas Townley (Uplands).
They join 10 returning councillors. They are: Kevin Cranston (Central), Rachel Lyons (Central), Rob Green (Slade), Steve Hurrell (Trinity), John Marjoram (Trinity), Amanda Moriarty (Trinity), Steven Naumann (Valley), Margaret Poulton (Valley), Haydn Sutton (Farmhill/Paganhill) and Simon Arundel (Uplands).
Councillor Cranston also paid tribute to councillor John Marjoram who has served as mayor for 10 years over several periods since 1990.