Florida’s Broward County Elects First Black Female Mayor

broward sharief

For the first time in Broward County’s history, commissioners on Tuesday selected a black woman raised in Muslim faith as the new county mayor.

Barbara Muhammad Sharief, who was elected as County Commission in 2010 and Vice Mayor last year, will now be taking the leading role as the county mayor in the Florida county for a year.

The mother of five and self made business woman ran under the slogan “Broward means business.” The electee says she will use the mayor’s podium to turn attention to small businesses and nonprofits and recognize exemplary county employees. She has also worked mostly on health care and aggressive dog issues since taking office for County Commission.

“I think it’s just testimony to what Broward County is right now,” said Nezar Hamze . “We’re a majority minority community. And just looking at the elections in the last couple years, we have a Jewish sheriff and now we have a Muslim mayor. So Broward County is really starting to reflect its diversity at the top.”

Nazar Hamze is the executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations in South Florida and a spokesman for Broward’s 43,000 Muslims. As one of the many supporters of Sharief, she says her appointment is “absolutely amazing.”

Acoording to the Huffington Post, Sharief believes her selection as mayor will inspire school girls, and others.

“In America, we are a culture of tolerance and diversity, and I think that for those people who see me and know my background, I think they’ll appreciate that,” she said.

Read more about Sharief’s story here.