Andrea Jenkins has just made history becoming the first trans woman of color in the United States to be elected to public office.
Jenkins won her race in the Eighth Ward of the Minneapolis City Council elections. She ran on a platform of raising the minimum wage and making housing affordable.
‘As an African American trans-identified woman, I know firsthand the feeling of being marginalized, left out, thrown under the bus,’ Jenkins said in her winning speech.
‘Those days are over. We don’t just want a seat at the table, we want to set the table.’
Jenkins won her seat convincingly, snagging a whopping 73.1% of first preference votes.
‘I am prepared and ready to bring positive change toward a more equitable Minneapolis,’ Jenkins said in a statement during the campaign.
‘I look forward to working with the residents of the 8th Ward, and beyond, in creating the policies and programs necessary to bring sustainable improvement for everyone in our economy, housing, and services.’
Jenkins told the Star Tribune she felt very proud of her community for electing her.
‘I’m feeling elated. Ecstatic. Extraordinarily happy right now,’ she said.
‘I’m really, really deeply proud of my community.’
Jenkins has been a long-time trans activist and has worked in the public service for 30 years.
She is a nationally and internationally recognized writer and artist, a 2011 Bush Fellow to advance the work of transgender inclusion. Jenkins currently leads the groundbreaking Transgender Oral History Project at the University of Minnesota.