Satya Rhodes-Conway becomes Madison’s first lesbian mayor
The city of Madison in Wisconsin has elected its first lesbian mayor, Satya Rhodes-Conway.
Rhodes-Conway was named mayor of Madison last night after receiving 61.9 percent of the votes. Her rival, Paul Soglin—who has served several terms as mayor of Madison—received 37.7 percent of the votes, according to NBC 15.
Her victory places her as the second female mayor—and the first openly gay mayor—in Madison’s history.
Satya Rhodes-Conway: ‘We’ve got to give hope’
The 47-year-old mayor elect arrived last night at the city’s Prism Dance Club to rapturous applause from the gathered crowd where she delivered a powerful victory speech.
In her speech, she referenced Harvey Milk, who was the first openly gay elected official in California’s history.
“Harvey [Milk] said—and he’s right—it’s not about personal gain, it’s not about ego, it’s not about power. It’s about giving young people out there hope. We’ve got to give hope.
“Tonight, I am full of hope. Hope for young people everywhere but especially here in Madison, that have felt left out, or talked down to, or bullied because of who they are.”
– Satya Rhodes-Conway
“Tonight, I am full of hope,” Rhodes-Conway continued. “Hope for young people everywhere but especially here in Madison, that have felt left out, or talked down to, or bullied because of who they are.
“I felt that way, once upon a time, and look where I am now.”
She also thanked her partner Amy, saying: “Most importantly, I want to thank my steadfast partner. I could not have done this without you.”
Paul Soglin had been dubbed ‘Mayor for Life’
Soglin was first elected mayor of Madison 45 years ago and had been dubbed “Mayor for Life” within the city because of the amount of time he has spent in the job.
Last year, he lost his bid to become governor of Wisconsin. At the time, he promised that he would not run for mayor again, however, after losing his bid for governor, he entered the race.
Before he decided to enter the race to serve another term as mayor of Madison, Soglin had endorsed Rhodes-Conway to replace him.
It was a stunning day of victories for LGBT+ candidates in the United States as Lori Lightfoot became Chicago’s first black and lesbian mayor last night.
She was joined on stage for her victory speech by her wife and daughter
Speaking after her victory, she said: “They’re seeing a city where it doesn’t matter what colour you are, where it sure doesn’t matter how tall you are, and where it doesn’t matter who you love,” Lightfoot said.
“In the Chicago we will build together, we will celebrate our differences. We will embrace our uniqueness. And we will make certain that we all have every opportunity to succeed.
“Every child out there should know this: Each of you, one day, can be the Mayor of Chicago.”