Queens, stand up!
After 122 years, Donovan Richards just became the first Black man to serve as the Queens borough president, reports AMNY.
Richards, a former councilman for the southeast region of Queens, NY, defeated Republican challenger Joann Ariola with a total of 518,840 votes to Ariola’s 205,893.
Initially, a special election to replace Borough President Melinda Katz was scheduled for March but had to be postponed due to the pandemic. Sharon Lee has been the acting president since January and Katz currently serves as Queens district attorney.
Honored to swear in @QnsBPRichards today as the new Queens Borough President.
I know you’re going to make the people of Queens proud. pic.twitter.com/qAT6Ix1VxQ
— NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) December 6, 2020
“Over the last few months, Acting Borough President Sharon Lee has taken on the challenges of this pandemic head-on and led Queens with grace through this difficult time,” Richards said, according to AMNY. “Since the election, she has worked hard to ensure a smooth transition and ensure that the office of borough president continues to deliver for Queens residents.”
His transition into office began following being sworn in on Dec. 2 after the results were certified by the NYC Board of Elections.
“Thank you for the opportunity to serve, #Queens,” Richards wrote via Twitter. “Let’s get to work.”
— Queens Borough President Donovan Richards (@QnsBPRichards) December 2, 2020
The history-making borough president plans to focus on fighting food insecurity along with making sure both residents and institutions have access to quality PPE.