During last year’s mid-term elections, ESSENCE launched the Chisholm List, a non-partisan list that profiled several black women running for various state, local and federal offices across the country. Of course, the list was named after famed politician Shirley Chisholm, and in keeping with Chisholm’s legacy, ESSENCE has partnered with the All-In Cities Initiative at PolicyLink, a national research and action institute dedicated to advancing economic and social equity that focuses on policies affecting low-income communities and communities of color, to launch a Black women mayors’ roundtable.
The partnership with PolicyLink and ESSENCE will broaden our political coverage while highlighting the work of several Black women mayors across the country. We want to shed light on the Black women who are keeping some of our most important cities running, while also letting you know that ESSENCE is not only proud of their work, but that we will always continue to uplift Black women in the world of politics.
Whereas beauty and entertainment have been a large focus in the past, we also want our readers to realize that in this day and age, Black women are saving the world and have become some of our most valuable political voices. We were shown that during the recent mid-term elections.
The purpose of the roundtables is simple, we are aiming to: build relationships between mayors to establish a supportive network and foster the exchange of ideas, increase the knowledge, tools, and policy ideas mayors participating in the network have to create equitable cities, particularly for Black women and increase public awareness of the work these leaders are doing to advance equity.
Last Friday, ESSENCE kicked off the partnership by holding our first of many roundtables that included Mayors LaToya Cantrell, New Orleans, La., Sharon Weston Broome, Baton Rouge, La., Catherine Pugh, Baltimore, Md., London Breed, San Francisco, Ca., Karen Weaver, Flint, Mi., and Vi Lyles, Charlotte, NC. The discussion was spearheaded by PolicyLink founder-in-residence Angela Glover Blackwell and Judy Reese Morse, President and CEO of The Urban League of Louisiana.
Friday’s kickoff will be followed by virtual roundtables, profile articles and will culminate with a panel at ESSENCE Festival.