Montgomery County Probate Judge Steven Reed has reportedly won a run-off election to become the first African-American mayor of Montgomery, Ala. in the city’s history.
Montgomery, the capital of Alabama, was founded in 1819.
Reed defeated television station owner David Woods by a wide margin. According to the Montgomery County Election Center, Reed had secured more than 67% of the vote with 98% of precincts reporting.
“Let the record show tonight, above all ... what we can do when we come together in this city and we build around positivity, around opportunity, and all the things that tie us together versus those things that keep us apart,” Reed told supporters after local media called the election.
“Tonight isn’t the end, tonight is the beginning,” he said. “Tonight sent a signal, not just to all of us here in Montgomery, all of us in Alabama, it sent a signal throughout this country about what kind of community we are right now, not what we were.”
Montgomery, the first capital of the Confederacy during the Civil War, was the site of many landmark events in the Civil Rights Movement, including the 1955 bus boycott started by Rosa Parks.
The National Memorial for Peace and Justice, the country’s first memorial to the victims of lynchings opened in 2018.
Reed previously became the first African-American county probate judge in a 2012 election.