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Lightfoot to be Chicago's first openly LGBTQ, Black female mayor, groups comment
2019-04-02

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Equality Illinois Celebrates Mayor-Elect Lori Lightfoot win

Brian C. Johnson, CEO of Equality Illinois, the state's civil rights organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer ( LGBTQ ) people, released the following statement following results of Tuesday's historic Chicago mayoral election:

"While we wait for every vote to be counted, we are incredibly thrilled with the votes that have come in. We congratulate Mayor - elect Lori Lightfoot for winning the election and her historic candidacy as the first-ever openly queer person to run for mayor of Chicago."

"Mayor - elect Lori Lightfoot will be the first lesbian and African American women to serve as mayor of Chicago — and just the second woman elected to the position. This victory is historic, and It is also an undeniably proud moment for the LGBTQ community."

"In the coming days and weeks, we look forward to working with Mayor- elect Lori Lightfoot in this significant leadership role to continue advancing justice for all people, including LGBTQ people, and ensuring that Chicago keeps moving forward as a welcoming and affirming city."

—Above from an Equality Illinois press release

LGBTQ Victory Fund: Lori Lightfoot to become the only Black lesbian mayor in the nation

Washington, DC — Chicago mayoral candidate Lori Lightfoot trounced her opponent tonight and will become the highest-ranking LGBTQ mayor in American history and the only Black openly lesbian mayor serving anywhere in the nation. Just two openly lesbian women have served as mayors of a top 100 city — former Houston Mayor Annise Parker and current Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan. Mayor Parker, now President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund, was the highest-ranking LGBTQ person ever elected mayor in the U.S. until Lightfoot's victory tonight. Victory Fund endorsed Lightfoot in December 2018 when many questioned her viability in a crowded primary race with 13 opponents.

Mayor Annise Parker is on-the-ground in Chicago at the Lightfoot Victory Party and is available to speak with media. Contact Elliot Imse, Senior Director of Communications at Victory Fund, at 646.957.4740 or elliot.imse@victoryfund.org to request an interview this evening or tomorrow.

"A Black lesbian taking power in the nation's third-largest city is a historic moment for so many communities that are too often ignored in American politics," said Mayor Parker. "Chicago's enormous influence on the national dialogue provides a platform for Lori to promote more inclusive solutions to the challenges facing our cities and nation — and to be a credible messenger as well. Lori will certainly remain focused on the issues facing Chicago. But as the highest-ranking LGBTQ person ever elected mayor of an American city — a title she takes from me — she is also now a key leader in the movement to build LGBTQ political power nationwide."

Lightfoot was the marquee race in Victory Fund's efforts to make 2019 the Year of the Lesbian Mayor. Three lesbian mayoral candidates — Lightfoot in Chicago, Satya Rhodes-Conway in Madison, Wisconsin, and Jolie Justus in Kansas City — all had elections tonight. Neither the run-off race for Rhodes-Conway or the primary race for Justus have been called as of 8:45pm ET. Lesbian mayoral candidate Jane Castor competes in a run-off on April 23 that will determine the next mayor of Tampa.

If all three lesbian mayoral candidates join Lightfoot in claiming victory, America will triple the number of out lesbians to have served as mayors of top 100 cities (from two to six). More information about the Year of the Lesbian Mayor is available online.

—Above from a LGBTQ Victory Fund press release

Human Rights Campaign-Backed Lori Lightfoot Elected Chicago's First Openly LGBTQ and Black Female Mayor

WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) — the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer ( LGBTQ ) civil rights organization — released the following statement celebrating Lori Lightfoot's election victory in the race for mayor of Chicago. Lightfoot will now make history as the city's first openly LGBTQ and Black female mayor.

"Tonight, Lori Lightfoot made history as Chicago's first openly LGBTQ and Black female mayor," said HRC Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs JoDee Winterhof. "HRC was proud to endorse Lightfoot and help turn out the vote for her historic candidacy. We congratulate Lori Lightfoot on her victory and look forward to working closely with her as the first openly LGBTQ and Black female mayor of Chicago to ensure the city moves forward to be an inclusive and welcoming place for everyone."

As mayor, Lori Lightfoot has pledged to safeguard the civil rights of the LGBTQ community. In Lori's LGBTQ policy framework, she outlines increasing LGBTQ representation in government by appointing mayoral LGBTQ liaisons, bolstering safety and justice for the trans community by improving police training and thoroughly investigating hate crimes, and addressing the needs of Chicago's LGBTQ community by creating youth drop-in centers and expanding housing options for seniors and veterans.

Lori Lightfoot most recently served as a senior equity partner in the Litigation and Conflict Resolution Group at Mayer Brown LLP. She also served as President of the Chicago Police Board from 2015 to 2018, where she worked to decide disciplinary matters involving all allegations of police misconduct. Lightfoot also held roles as interim first deputy of the Chicago Department of Procurement Services, chief of staff and general counsel of the Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communications. She also was also an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, managing large-scale investigations involving political corruption and criminal drug conspiracies. Lightfoot has served on the board of numerous organizations, including NARAL Illinois, ACLU Illinois, Better Government Association and the Center for Conflict Resolution.

— Above from an HRC press release

DNC Chair Tom Perez makes statement on Lori Lightfoot's historic election as mayor of Chicago, Illinois

"Congratulations to Chicago Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot on her historic victory tonight. In 2018, trailblazing candidates made history, and broke records across the nation. With Lori's election, that trend shows no signs of stopping.

"As the first openly LGBTQ woman of color to be elected mayor in any of America's 100 largest cities and the first black woman to serve as Mayor of Chicago, Lightfoot is an inspiration to thousands of LGBTQ people of color who have a new role model in elected office.

"This historic win reaffirms that our diversity is our greatest strength, and that our elected leaders should reflect the diversity of the communities they represent. I look forward to working with Mayor-elect Lightfoot as she fights to build a brighter future for all. The people of Chicago will be well served with her leadership."

—Above from a Democratic National Committee press release


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