Carrie Saxon Perry
Carrie Saxon Perry was the first black woman to be elected mayor of a major New England city – Hartford, Connecticut – in 1987. She served three terms before being defeated in 1993. She had previously served as a state representative, and was known for her distinctive broad-rimmed hats.
Carrie Saxon Perry
|63rd Mayor of Hartford|
December 1, 1987 – December 7, 1993
|Preceded by||Thirman L. Milner|
|Succeeded by||Michael P. Peters|
Perry was elected the mayor of Hartford at the age of 56. She is credited for helping reduce racial tension in the city; notably, she visited black neighborhoods after the Rodney King verdict, which was credited with preventing rioting in Hartford as had happened in other large cities. She also focused on reducing burgeoning gang activity and drug trafficking, which was on the rise at the time. The position in Hartford is considered largely ceremonial, and paid a stipend of $17,500.
After three terms as mayor, she was defeated by first-time Democratic challenger Michael Peters, a city firefighter. He had run on a campaign capitalizing on Hartford's declining economy and a sense that street crime was on the rise.
A Hartford native, Perry had been a social worker in her early life. In 1949 she enrolled as political science major at Howard University, leaving after two years to raise a child. Her first run for state representative ended in defeat in 1976. She was elected in 1980, and served on posts as assistant majority leader, chair of the bonding subcommittee, and a committee member for education, finance and housing.
Perry has a son, four grandchildren, and two great grandchildren.
- Johnson, Kirk (1993-11-04). "THE 1993 ELECTIONS: Connecticut; Mayor Perry Is Denied a Fourth Term by Voters in Hartford". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
- Marshall, Marilyn (April 1988). "Carry Saxon Perry: More than a pretty hat". Ebony. pp. 60–62.
- "Mayor love politics - and hats". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved February 2016 – via newspaperarchive.com . Check date values in: