Mayoral candidate Satya Rhodes-Conway has achieved victory in her bid to become mayor of Madison, Wisconsin. In doing so, she becomes the first openly gay mayor of the US city, and only the second woman.
Democrat Rhodes-Conway, 47, a former three-term Madison City Council member, ousts incumbent Paul Soglin.
Soglin, 73, served as mayor from 1973-1979, 1989-1997, and from 2011 until now. He was Madison’s longest-serving mayor and it was his 22nd year in the office.
Rhodes-Conway’s victory was called around 9.25pm local time Tuesday. She had 62% of the vote with 92% of precincts counted (47,915 votes to Soglin ‘s 29,1500).
New Madison mayor: ‘Full of hope for our city’
Rhodes-Conway campaigned on a platform of developing affordable housing, improving Madison transportation with rapid transit, tackling systematic racial inequities and addressing climate change.
In her victory speech at Prism Dance Club, Rhodes-Conway paid tribute to Harvey Milk as an inspiration. She also said, ‘I am full of hope for our city!’
Her victory comes on the same night as another LGBTI candidate made history in Chicago. Lori Lightfoot became the first black, lesbian to be elected mayor of the Illinois city. Lightfoot becomes the highest-ranking LGBTI mayor in American history.
Other LGBTI candidates to achieve success in local elections yesterday included Democrat Jolie Justus in Kansas City. She secured the top spot in the run-off for Mayor. The mayoral election will take place there on June 18.