Local state elections took place all over the country yesterday (November 7th) and, in Minnesota, one candidate for Minneapolis City Council just made history. Democrat Andrea Jenkins is the first openly transgender black woman to be elected to U.S. public office.
After working as a policy aide to two Minneapolis City Council members for 12 years, Jenkins won the Ward 8 City Council seat. She is considered “one of the most experienced first-time candidates to run for Minneapolis City Council,” her campaign’s press release states.
While in office, Jenkins will work toward more affordable housing, green jobs, and improving police accountability. She also hopes to improve Minneapolis’ status as the second worst city in America for African Americans by addressing youth violence, overseeing the city’s economic growth, and improving the city’s relationship and involvement with the arts.
Jenkins herself is a poet, prose author, and performance artist, who has also worked as historian for the Transgender Oral History Project at the University of Minnesota.
Jenkins is dedicated to bringing equality to City Council and to Ward 8 come January, and we couldn’t be more excited about her victory and what it suggests about progress in politics.