The city of Chicago saw two historic firsts following Tuesday’s election of Lori Lightfoot as mayor. The former federal prosecutor is the first African-America female mayor elected in the role. She is the first openly gay person elected to the position as well.
Lightfoot, 56, defeated Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle in a runoff election, the Chicago Tribune reports. On Tuesday’s runoff, Lightfoot received 70 percent of the votes from all 50 of the city’s wards.
“We felt very comfortable that we would have a nice margin, based upon our internal polling and what we were hearing from other people across the city, but to sweep all 50 wards with that kind of margin, obviously it’s historic and it’s very, very gratifying,” she said.
Lightfoot, who has never held elected office, said her victory proved voters in the Windy City are interested in something new and fresh. “I think what it signals is that people want a break from that broken political past, and I’m excited about the prospects,” she said.
The newly elected mayor stressed the importance of making public safety one of her primary concerns. “Without that, nothing else is possible, so that is a sacred obligation that I take on willingly,” she said.