I take this moment to quickly express my personal pride in the election of several of my friends yesterday to public office. Paul Winfield was elected as the second African-American mayor of Vicksburg. Parker Wiseman was formally elected as the Mayor of Starkville. Carolyn Washington was elected to the city council of Rolling Fork and Tony Yarber was elected to the city council of Jackson. Winfield and Wiseman defeated incumbent mayors and Washington and Yarber won open seats.
All of them are under the age of 50 and won in their first ever political campaign. However, none of them were novices in the political process. Winfield had been the board attorney for Warren County and is currently the Treasurer of the Mississippi Democratic Party. Wiseman, whose father is the director of The John Stennis Institute of Government and Public Policy, has been president of the Young Democrats of Mississippi. Washington has been a field director for many local and congressional campaigns and Yarber is currently a elementary school principal.
These newly elected officials are the reason why I stay encouraged about politics in Mississippi and that is a subject that I will delve into in a future blog. Right now, I just want to go on the record to congratulate them on a hard fought victory and I look forward to watch them develop into the positive leaders I know they will become.