This is a list of black mayors in cities with a population over 50,000. This is based on information from the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies. The Joint Center describes itself as “one of the nation’s premier research and public policy institutions and the only one whose work focuses exclusively on issues of particular concern to African Americans and other people of color.”
Their black mayors list is here. I have updated the list; the Joint Center’s list was effective as of the end of 2007. This list should be correct as of August 2008. If readers have any updates to provide, please fell free to send them to us. Items in bold are known updates as of very early 2010 – but a number of entries are certainly outdated in 2010.
There are 45 cities on the list. African Americans are at least 40% of the population in 35 cities. Ten of the 45 mayors are female.
Here’s the list:
|Michael B. Coleman|
|New Orleans, LA||484,674||
|C. Ray Nagin|
|William L. Mallory|
|Byron W. Brown|
|Cory A. Booker|
|Baton Rouge, LA||227,818||
|Melvin "Kip" Holden|
|Cedric B. Glover|
|William V. Bell|
|Otis S. Johnson|
|William D. Euille|
|Henry W. Hearns|
|Miami Gardens, FL||105,414||
|James Holley III|
|Willie Adams, Jr.|
|Evanston Township, IL||74,239||
|Patricia A Vance|
|James M. Baker|
|East Orange, NJ||69,824||
|Mt. Vernon, NY||68,381||
|Daytona Beach, FL||64,112||
|Hempstead Village, NY||56,554||
|Pine Bluff, AR||55,085||
One of the more unlikely persons on the list is Terry Bellamy of Asheville, NC. Bellamy is a black woman mayor in a city that is only 17.6% African American. The only city on the list with a smaller black percentage of the population is Lancaster, CA, with a percentage of 16.0%. When Bellamy was elected in November 2005, she became the youngest mayor in North Carolina, the youngest Mayor ever elected in Asheville and the first African-American to serve as Mayor in Asheville.
This is some footage of Bellamy giving a talk in front of Asheville city hall in April of 2007:
13 thoughts on “Factoid: Black Mayors of Cities with Population Over 50,000”
Thanks for this. I wasn’t familiar with Bellamy of Asheville, NC. Quite a remarkable achievement.
Anthony Foxx won the election for mayor in Charlotte, NC
Linda Thompson first black female Mayor Harrisburg Pa
Kim Bracey first black female Mayor York Pa
Both of those cities have under 50,000 residents.
Please add MayorAlvin Brown ofJacksonville, Fl the 11th largest city in USA:
Mayor Brown has hired a full time photographer for his personal use. I guess that is to help him govern the city. This is a self serving person with a large ego who is not a professional. But, he got elected. How did that happen? Voter fraud maybe?
this is gonna be awsome for my black history project! Thanks for all your help. 🙂 NO PLAGERISM!!!
The Mayors of Detroit , Baltimore , Memphis , Oakland , Trenton , Newark ,Camden , Philly , DC, Buffalo , Compton , Pontiac don’t have anything to be proud of . Their city’s are complete failure’s about bankrupt and the streets over run with crime. The city’s are losing population and jobs…..Yet people keep voting these clowns back into office then complain that their city’s suck…..
Asheville’s African American population is actually at 13%.
New Orleans mayor is a non black named Mitch Landrieu
I think the Mayor of Cincinnati was Mark Mallory — you have his father William listed (also a politician)
What part of “Africa” are they from?
Their ancestors were from Africa. Sadly, African Americans were typically unable to keep records about the heritage of their forebearers. But we can acknowledge this lost heritage with the term “African American.”