The tides are changing.
Monroeville, Alabama elected its first Black mayor in the city’s 121-year history, The Hill reports.
Monroeville is a small town with less than 6,000 residents. It is known best for being home to Harper Lee, the author of the award-winning literary classic, “To Kill a Mockingbird.” The town recently elected Charles Andrews to serve as their next mayor, making him the first Black person to hold the position.
The 65-year-old mayor is no stranger to firsts, having previously become the first Black state trooper to reach the rank of major in Alabama’s Department of Public Safety back in 1994. He became the first Black person to serve as interim director of the department in 2002, eventually being appointed by President Barack Obama in 2011 as a U.S. Marshall in Mobile, Alabama.
Andrews defeated incumbent Sandy Smith, a second win for the state fresh off the heels of Pleasant Grove’s appointment of their first Black city council candidates. For a city known for racial injustice, the election of Andrews is monumental. The new mayor believes that the town has grown beyond the story told in Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book and hopes that he can continue contributing to that growth.
“Today, as I stand on the threshold of history, the shoulders of our parents and our foreparents, we are one people, one town and one team, all-inclusive. I am looking forward to working with the city council, the police department, business leaders, my staff, and everyone for the betterment of the town and its citizens…There is no time to waste,” Andrews said.
Congratulations, Mayor Andrews!
Photo Courtesy of Mayor Charles Andrews/The Hill