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A Shift in the Political Landscape: Black Women Running Cities
March 8 @ 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
In 2021, Black women were mayors of eight of the 100 U.S. cities with the largest populations. It was a record number. In a November 2021 New York Times article about the rise of Black women mayors, scholar and voting rights expert David Bositis said, “This is the age of Black women in politics. This has been culminating for a long time.”
This rise in Black women in elected positions can be attributed to community activism, changing demographics, targeted recruitment efforts, and increased support from major organizations. “Before, it used to be that Black women didn’t run. They were the organizers and the campaign volunteers, but the men were the ones who were running for office,” Sharon Wright Austin, a professor at the University of Florida, said in the same article. “But now you’re seeing Black women not only organizing campaigns and working in communities but having the confidence that they can run for office themselves.”
In Northeast Ohio, Black women lead three of our towns–Maple Heights, Richmond Heights, and Newburgh Heights–representing a combined total of more than 33,000 residents. Two of the mayors are the first Black women to lead their respective cities.
Join the City Club as we mark International Women’s Day for a conversation led by Sheila Wright with Mayors Annette Blackwell, Kim Thomas, and Gigi Traore about the role Black women leaders play in our changing political landscape.