Deqa Dhalac has broken barriers to become the first Somali-American mayor in South Portland, Maine.
CNN reported that Dhalac made U.S. history by becoming the first Somali American to ever be elected as mayor.
While speaking with CNN, Dhalac said she had no intentions on running for a political office, but that changed once Donald Trump was elected president in 2016.
She attended anti-Trump protests and protests against white supremacy in order to let her voice be heard and promote change.
In 2018, she made history to become the first African American and first Muslim to be elected to city council in South Portland, Press Herald reported.
In November, the city council unanimously supported her nomination for mayor and in December she was elected to serve a one-year term.
About 30 years ago, the newly-elected mayor fled Somalia due to a civil war and resettled in Atlanta, Georgia as a refugee. There she organized and encouraged other immigrants to become U.S. citizens and vote.
NPR reported, Dhalac eventually found solace in Maine, where she has resided for more than a decade.
While speaking with NPR, Dhalac said over the years she has dedicated her time to building relationships in her community.
“Getting to know people in all walks of life, so people know me and said [when I was elected], she’s not mayor for me, she’s my friend, which really makes me humbled,” she said.
Dhalac has become the eleventh woman to be elected as the city’s mayor.