Mayor LaToya Cantrell and Louisiana State Senator Karen Carter Peterson have been added to Higher Heights’ Chisholm List 50.
The list is named for Shirley Anita Chisholm, who in 1968 became the first black woman elected to the U.S. Congress. She served in the House of Representatives serving the 12th congressional district of New York from 1969 to 1983. In 1972, Chisholm made history again by becoming both the first black candidate for a major party’s presidential nomination and the first woman to run for president. In 2015, President Barack Obama posthumously awarded her with the Presidential Medal of Honor.
Higher Heights’ Chisholm’s List highlights 50 powerful black women elected to public office who are distinguishing themselves in their attempts to shape the country’s political agenda. The 501(c)(4) states on their website that they are a “national organization providing Black women with a political home exclusively dedicated to harnessing their power to elect Black women, influence elections and advance progressive politics.”
It wasn’t just being the first female mayor of New Orleans that earned Mayor LaToya Cantrell a spot on the list. Higher Heights also praises her efforts to achieve bail reform, increase access to affordable housing inside the city, help families in crisis, and more.
Senator Karen Carter Peterson is the first woman to serve as chair of Louisiana’s Democratic party. She is also the vice chair of the Democratic National Committee’s Civic Engagement & Voter Participation Committee.
You can read about the other 48 women chosen for the list here.