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Regina Romero is the first Latina mayor of Tucson. Photo: Arizona Daily Star.
Regina Romero is the first Latina mayor of Tucson. Photo: Arizona Daily Star.

Regina Romero becomes the first Latina mayor of Tucson

The swearing-in of the former Arizona councilwoman as mayor of Tucson transforms her into the first Latina mayor in one of the nation's largest cities.

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Last Monday, Democrat Regina Romero made history by being sworn in as the first woman mayor of Tucson, and the only Latina mayor in the 50 largest cities in the United States.

After starting her campaign in 2019, and winning the Democratic nomination, Romero had to face Ed Ackerley, a former Democrat who tried to take the independent field to win conservative votes.

Finally, Romero defeated Ackerley by 87,000 votes and has become the city's first woman mayor, and second Hispanic mayor - after Estevan Ochoa, who held office between 1875 and 1876.

The new mayor of Tucson is the daughter of immigrants and was the first of six children to graduate from college. In 2007 she was the first Latina to be elected to the Tucson City Council, and also participated in the founding of the Arizona Association of Latino Elected Officials (AALEO).

Before joining the public service, Romero also helped found Las Adelitas, the first legal aid organization for Latinas.

Her priorities have always been the protection of biological diversity, the rights of immigrants, the defense of equal pay, and the implementation of an Economic Recovery Plan for the city.

However, her challenge as mayor of one of the country's largest cities are far from simple. 

"At a time when our national politics have been sown with division, Tucsonans remain united by our shared desire to promote a safe, just and sustainable city that provides economic opportunity for our families and future generations," Romero said after her victory.

"This movement is open to everyone, whatever your background, whatever your party, whoever you voted for. Let's work together! We will always be one Tucson. Somos uno!"

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