LEADERS OF COLOR GRADUATES WIN BIG IN HISTORIC NIGHT
August 7, 2020
Marquita Bradshaw Becomes First Black Woman to Win Democratic Senate Primary
MEMPHIS, TN (August 7, 2020) — In a truly historic night, Leaders of Color-Memphis graduate Marquita Bradshaw became the first Black woman to win the Democratic Senate Primary in Tennessee—and the first Black woman to win a Senate Democratic Primary in the South—on Thursday, while graduate Sheleah Harris won the Shelby County District 5 School Board race, making her the first Black woman to hold the seat.
“Tonight exemplifies that anything is possible when you uplift and empower promising Leaders of Color with the tools to run and win a political campaign,” said Mike Bland, national director of Leaders of Color. “Marquita Bradshaw has changed the trajectory of the 2020 election in Tennessee and across our nation, and we are incredibly proud to be part of her journey to the United State Capitol.”
“In Shelby County, Sheleah outperformed and outraised her opponent, and received more endorsements than any other candidate running in her School Board Race, “ added Bland. “A former educator, she will continue to be a fierce advocate for Shelby County students.”
Leaders of Color recruits for public office and nonelectoral positions of civic leadership Black and Brown leaders who are respected in their communities, providing a 70-hour training program, as well as a suite of resources to help these leaders win elections and other positions of policymaking influence. The Leaders of Color Training Program is the launch of a long-term infrastructure of support and development to elevate a new generation of bold Black and Brown leaders.
“We founded Leaders of Color to create a pathway to leadership for Black and Brown folks who are hungry for change and tired of the lack of representation we experience at all levels of government,” said Shavar Jeffries, president of Education Reform Now and Education Reform Now Advocacy, which run the civic and electoral programs, respectively. “Today, we see that pipeline take hold in a powerful way, as our graduates shatter the glass ceiling for Black women in Tennessee.”
Leaders of Color Graduate Issac Freeman also ran unopposed for Democratic State Executive Committeeman in District 33. Five other Leaders of Color program graduates are on the ballot today; their races have yet to be called.
You can learn more about the Leaders of Color program here.
Education Reform Now Advocacy (ERNA) is the 501(c)(4) nonprofit partner of Democrats for Education Reform and affiliate of Education Reform Now.
June 21, 2021
May 7, 2021
April 20, 2021