After Doug Jones won the special election to replace Senator Jeff Sessions in Alabama in December, author, podcaster and TEDWomen presenter Luvvie Ajayi was reading about the results and one statistic jumped out at her. "When I read that 98% of Black women voted for Doug Jones (while 63% of white women voted for Moore) and that gave him the win, I realized that we really need to do work to elevate Black women and get them into office," she told me recently, "Because if you can't trust anybody else, you can trust Black women."
Luvvie started googling to see if there was a central location where she could learn about all of the Black women running for office in 2018. She couldn't find one. So she tapped three of her friends and together they crowdsourced a database of Black women running across the country.
Fast-forward six months and the Black Women in Politics database now lists over 600 Black women running for national, state and local offices across the country. The database is searchable by state and by candidate name. Luvvie notes that the only states still unrepresented on her list are Wyoming, Montana and Hawaii. If you know anyone running in those states, or know of other women who aren't on the list, she asks that you submit their names at the site.
In addition to the 38 Black women running in Alabama, there are 76 in Texas, 57 in Illinois and, in my home state of Georgia, 34. You can check your state stats here. Speaking of my home state of Georgia, you have no doubt heard about Stacey Abrams, the Democratic candidate for governor. If Stacey is successful this November — and I believe she can be, given her ground campaign, her clarity of vision and strategy, and her impressive record of public service — she will be the first African-American woman governor in American history and Georgia’s first woman governor.