The city of Atlanta welcomes is 60th mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms. Bottoms is a proud graduate of Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University (FAMU) and woman of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. After winning a runoff election by 750 votes, Bottoms greeted a crowd of exuberant supporters. She ran through a list of thank you’s to her siblings, family, friends, and campaign staff.
With her four adopted children surrounding her, one affectionately laying on her arm, Bottoms shared a direct message to some of her supporters:
“For all the little girls out there, who need somebody to believe that you are better than your circumstances, I️ want you all to remember that black girl magic is real…”
Bottoms is a prime example of the reality that is black girl magic, as is Shirley Franklin.
Fifteen years ago, the city of Atlanta welcomed Shirley Franklin as its 58th mayor. Like Bottoms, Franklin is also a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc.(honorary) and won the mayoral election with 50% of the votes. In 2002, the Howard University (HU) graduate made history as the first female mayor of the city in addition to becoming the first black woman to be elected mayor of a major southern city. Under Franklin’s leadership Atlanta transformed from having one of the lowest percentages of ‘Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design’-certified buildings to one of the highest. Franklin left a “green” legacy as she focused on sustainability and environmental friendliness, introducing the “Clean Water Act” her first year I️n office.
Blazing a trail behind Franklin, is her fellow Howard graduate Kasim Reed. Attorney Mohammed Kasim Reed is a two-time graduate of Howard University and man of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. I️n 2002 Reed was appointed as the youngest General Trustee to serve on Howard’s Board of Trustees where he continues to serve. Mayor Reed has held his current position as the 59th mayor of Atlanta since 2010. Like Bottoms, the two-term mayor faced a runoff election against republican candidate for Mayor, Mary Norwood, and won by 714 votes. Reed’s legacy includes balancing ]the city’s budget by limiting pensions for employees, spending the money on the police force and community centers I️n poor neighborhoods.
I️n 2002 Howard University alumna Shirley Franklin became the 58th mayor of the city of Atlanta.
I️n 2010 Howard University alum Kasim Reed became the 59th mayor of the city of Atlanta.
Next year, FAMU alumna Keisha Lance Bottoms will be officially sworn in as the 60th mayor of the city of Atlanta.
If doing math correctly, the city of Atlanta faces the potential of having a HBCU graduate at the helm of its government for 24 years! HU and FAMU have many reasons to be proud and Keisha Lance Bottoms, Kasim Reed, and Shirley Franklin are three of them.
- Shirley Franklin and Keisha Lance Bottoms are both members of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
- Mayor Reed’s wife, Shirley Sarah-Elizabeth Langford Reed also graduated from the Howard University School of Law.
- Before he died, Shirley Franklin’s husband David was a proud Morehouse Man.
- Keisha and husband Derek both have juris doctorate degrees.
- Keisha Lance Bottoms and Kasim Reed are childhood friends.
- Bottoms is one of nine children born to soul music legend Major Lance.