Keisha Lance Bottoms, a 47-year-old African-American woman decided she wanted to become Atlanta, Georgia’s next mayor. With a determined mind and the will to win, she sought out to accomplish that goal. Bottoms, made her dream a reality on December 5th, after winning the mayoral race by a narrow margin against 65-year-old independent candidate Mary Norwood. Bottoms, a Democrat and a HBCU graduate, won the election with just over 800 votes more than Norwood.
This was not the first time Bottoms decided to get involved with politics. She served as a former member of Atlanta’s city council and was mentored by none other than the outgoing Mayor Kasim Reed. Reed gave Bottoms his backing during the mayoral running, to become his replacement. Bottoms victory was not met with all open arms and congratulatory comments, as members of her opposing team made allegations of corruption. With the final results ending neck and neck, Bottoms opponent Norwood, along with her supporters examined the final results. Although Norwood’s team felt there were some questionable findings they decided to accept her defeat.
The Legacy Continues
During a ceremony held on Tuesday, Keisha Lance Bottoms became the 60th Mayor of Atlanta Georgia. The chocolate city, has had an African-American Mayor dating all the way back to 1974. If Bottoms opponent Mary Norwood would have won the race, she would have been the city’s first Caucasian, female to hold the position and non African-American since 1974. With more than 95k ballets cast and a recount requested by Norwood, due to the small marginal win, Bottoms was all smiles on Tuesday when she accepted her new position: “Only in Atlanta could a young girl named Keisha who attended Frederick Douglass High School on the westside of Atlanta go on to become the 60th mayor of the greatest city in the world,” Bottoms said at the swearing-in ceremony Tuesday afternoon.
Black Girls Rock
It was only fitting that Bottoms was introduced to the city she will now lead, by one of her predecessors Andrew Young. Young served as the city’s mayor previously for eight years: “I can’t think of a better mayor to turn this over to than the young lady we’re about to swear in,” said Andrew Young, who served as Atlanta’s mayor from 1982-1990 and also served as a U.S. Congressman and the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.
With a prideful demeanor and excitement in her voice, Bottoms fully understands the many challenges ahead of her: “The bar has been set incredibly high for our city and I thank you for your belief in me. I thank you for your belief that, as one Atlanta, we can raise the bar higher still.” During Bottoms acceptance speech she summed it up nicely, for all the young girls that may want to follow in the many footsteps of leaders before them: “For all the little girls out there, who need somebody to believe that you’re better than your circumstances, I want you all to remember that Black Girl Magic is real,” Bottoms said. “And across this city, we got Black Girl Magic, we got Black Boy Magic, we got White Girl Magic, we got White Boy Magic, we have Brown Girl Magic, Brown boy Magic and everything in between. This is a city for all of us and I’m so honored to be your 60th mayor.”
Congratulations to Atlanta’s 60th Mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms!
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