History Made: LaToya Cantrell, First Female Mayor of New Orleans Elected

elections, history, voting


Photo Credit: http://www.nolacitycouncil.com/meet/meet_cantrell.asp

LaToya Cantrell was elected as the next mayor of New Orleans on Saturday, November 18th in a run-off election.  This is significant, because Cantrell is the first woman mayor elected to this seat in the city’s 299-year history.  Cantrell is a Los Angeles native who moved to New Orleans to attend college at Xavier University.  She has experience working as a nonprofit professional, and later becoming an organizer after Hurricane Katrina.  In 2012, she was first elected to the New Orleans City Council as a representative for District B and was re-elected unopposed in 2014.

Councilwoman Cantrell’s accomplishments include: serving as chair of the City Council’s committee on Community Development; introducing the “Smoke-Free Ordinance,”  which bans smoking in most public spaces in New Orleans; and introducing the “Welcoming Cities” Resolution, which seeks to increase diversity and inclusion within the City of New Orleans.

She will be sworn in and officially take office in May 2018.  Congratulations again to Ms. Cantrell.

For more info about Ms. Cantrell: http://www.nolacitycouncil.com/meet/meet_cantrell.asp



Election Day 2017

elections, politics, voting

Today is a very important day throughout the country. There are very important state and local races taking place across the nation in New Jersey, Virginia, New York City, North Carolina cities (Charlotte, Greensboro, and Raleigh), and Atlanta Mayor and some special races in Georgia. Two of the most important races taking place today are gubernatorial races in Virginia and New Jersey.

In Virginia, gubernatorial candidates Ed Gillepsie(R) and Ralph Northam(D) are the two contenders to succeed current Virginia governor, Terry McAuliffe. Mr. Gillepsie is the former chairman of the Republican Party, and Mr. Northam is a physician and the current Lt. Governor in Virginia. This is expected to be a close race, as polling shows that Mr. Northam has a slight lead ahead of Mr. Gillepsie. President Trump has tweeted in support of Mr. Gillepsie and has shown his support, while encouraging his base to do the same. There are 100 House of Delegate seats that will be filled today in VA, and the Attorney General’s race is occurring.

In New Jersey, the current Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno(R) and Mr. Philip Murphy(D) are both vying to become the next governor of New Jersey. One of the two will succeed, Gov. Chris Christie. Mr. Murphy is a former Goldman Sachs employee, and former Ambassador to Germany. Early polling showed Mr. Murphy with a lead over Ms. Guardagno; however it is still anyone’s race until the results are in completely.

In Atlanta, Charlotte, and New York City, there are city mayoral and city council races taking place today.

Personally, I am thrilled at all of the women who are on the ballot. In Virginia, there are 17 women running for state office in the Virginia legislature. In New Jersey, there are 11 women running for state office in the New Jersey state legislature. I am rooting for many of these women, not just because they are women. But, I am rooting for them, because their voices and representation is needed in local and state government. State and local legislatures must begin to reflect the diversity and differences among us all.

Jennifer Carroll Foy is an advocate, attorney, and mother who I am rooting for today, as she seeks to represent District 2 in the Virginia House of Delegates. I am invested in her, because she understands perseverance and she is qualified to effectively serve based upon her education, work as a public defender, and caregiver for her family. Her voice and experience is needed in Richmond. I hope that she and other women will be successful in their races.

Other amazing women running include: Vi Lyles who is running to become the next mayor of Charlotte, and Nikema Williams is running to become Senator in Georgia’s 39th District.

Today’s elections are extremely significant, because these races will help Democrats and Republicans gauge the political climate among voters since Trump’s win last November. Elections being held today will help both parties identify key issues and areas to focus on as we prepare to focus on 2018 Midterm Elections.

So, if you’re in New York City, Charlotte, Atlanta, Virginia or New Jersey—- GO VOTE and also ensure that you do your research to cast your ballot for the best candidates to represent you. Your elected officials are an extension of you and your voice. Be invested!

Happy Voting!


Election 2016: Donald Trump, and Historic Wins

2016 Presidential Election, elections, law, politics

Donald Trump, 45th President of the United States

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 marked an incredible day in America’s history. Voters took to the polls and elected candidates on local, state, and national levels. Of course, the country was seemingly in a state of shock after Donald J. Trump was elected as our 45th president. Additionally, Republicans retained control of the Senate and House of Representatives. It is likely that the Supreme Court nominee and next justice will also be a conservative jurist. This means that all three branches of government, executive, legislative, and judicial will likely be conservative.

Trumps victory was a shock to much of the nation as the media, pollsters, and many political pundits predicted that Secretary Hillary Clinton would be our next Commander-in-Chief. Some theorists have suggested that Clinton was not likable, failed to capture the attention and votes of millennials, and minority voters. Others have suggested that minority voters and millennials are to blame for Clinton’s painstaking loss. Potentially, it was the redundant email scandal or the Bengazi attack issue. In hindsight, she loss by a lot and the election showed a sharp divide of support between the two candidates.

What many thought was illogical or impossible happened and we as a nation witnessed  what many did not expect. Although, protests have started in many cities across the country and on social media against Trump as our next President, Hillary Clinton and President Obama have respected the voice of the voters. They have encouraged Americans to embrace him and respect him as our next President. Hillary Clinton gave a graceful and poised concession speech yesterday, where she admonished her supporters and the country to give Donald Trump an “open mind and a chance to lead.”

President-Elect Trump has outlined what he plans to do during his first 100 days in office, where he hopes to impose term limits for members of Congress; impose greater lobbying bans, cancel some executive orders; select a nominee for the Supreme Court;  work on this country’s infrastructure; and repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Some Americans are happy, while many are terrified about the outcome of the election. Regardless of how we feel about Mr. Trump time will only tell what his legacy will be, and how he will impact our country as our 45th President. It is incumbent that we as Americans focus on how we can contribute to improving the current state of our country and communities. We must recognize that a Trump presidency may not  be what we wanted, hoped for, or even anticipated; but it is now our reality. So, it is time for all of us to work to improve our condition and pray for the best.

Historic Wins for Women

This election was also very special, because many women were elected to very key positions. The following women were victorious on Tuesday as they shattered glass ceilings:

  • Catherine Cortez Masto-(NV): She was elected as the first Latina Senator elected to the U.S. Senate. She was elected to succeed Harry Reid.
  • Tammy Duckworth-(IL): She was elected as the second Asian-American Senator. She is an Iraq war veteran, who lost both her legs in a 2004 helicopter accident. She is also the first Thai-woman elected to Congress.
  • Kamala Harris-(CA): She was elected as the first Indian-American woman, and the second African-American woman elected to the U.S. Senate. She is also California’s first African American woman Senator.
  • Pramila Jayapal-(WA): She is the first Indian-American woman elected to the House of Representative.
  • Stephanie Murphy-(FL): She is the first Vietnamese-American woman elected to the House of Representative.
  • Ilhan Omar-(MN): She is the first Somali-American, Muslim woman elected to a state legislature.

The election of these women shows that our country is progressive on some level, and ready for women to lead. It is important that this election serve as a reminder that there is much work for each of us to do. We need more diversity in public office, and we have to become the change we wish to see starting today. Let’s get to work!