Women of Color in Elective Office 2021

Congress, Statewide, State Legislature, Mayors

For information on the history of women of color in elective office click here.


Vice President

Kamala Harris (D) currently serves as Vice President. She is the first woman of color, the first Black person, and the first South Asian person elected to this office.

Congress
49

Of the 143 women serving in the 117th U.S. Congress, 49, or 34.3%, are women of color; in addition, a Black woman, a Latina, an Asian Pacific Islander, and a Caribbean American woman serve as Delegates to the House from Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, and the Virgin Islands, respectively. Women of color constitute 9.2% of the total 535 members of Congress. The record high for women of color serving in Congress was 52, set between January 3, 2021, and January 18, 2021.  

44 D
5 R

U.S. Senate (3)

1
Latina - (1D)

Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV)

2
Asian Pacific Islander - (2D)

Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)
Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI)

U.S. House (46)

23
Black (23D)

Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC)
Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA)
Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH)
Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE)
Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO
Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY)
Rep. Val Demings (D-FL)
Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-CT)
Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX)
Rep. Robin L. Kelly (D-IL)
Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-MI)
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX)
Rep. Lucy McBath (D-GA)
Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI)
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN)
Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA)
Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL)
Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-IL)
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA)
Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ)
Rep. Nikema Williams (D-GA)
Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL)

12
Latina (10D, 2R)

Rep. Nanette Baragan (D-CA)
Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-TX)
Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-TX)
Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA)
Rep. Teresa Leger (D-MN)
Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-CA)
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY)
Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA)
Rep. Maria E. Salazar (R-FL)
Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA)
Rep. Norma Torres (D-CA)
Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY)

7
Asian Pacific Islander (5D, 2R)

Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA)
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA)
Rep. Young Kim (R-CA)
Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA)
Rep. Grace Meng (D-NY)
Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL)
Rep. Michelle Steel (R-CA)

1
Middle Eastern/North African (1D)

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI)

1
Native American/Alaska Native (1D)

Rep. Sharice Davids (D-KS)

2
Multiracial (1D, 1R)

Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY) (Latina, White)
Rep. Marilyn Strickland (D-WA) (Black, Asian Pacific Islander)

U.S. House Delegates (4)

1
Black (1D)

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC)

1
Latina (1R)

Del. Jenniffer Gonzalez (R-PR)

1
Asian Pacific Islander (1R)

Del. Amata Radewagen (R-AS)

1
Caribbean American (1D)

Del. Stacey Plaskett (D-VI)

Statewide Elective Executives
18

Of the 95 women serving in statewide elective executive offices, 18, or 18.9%, are women of color. Women of color constitute 5.8% of the total 310 statewide elective executives. The record high for women of color serving in statewide elective executive office was 19, set between April 14, 2021 and July 5, 2021.

15 D
3 R
5
Black (5D)
7
Latina (5D, 2R) 
3
Asian Pacific Islander(2D, 1R)
 

Tish James (D-NY), Attorney General
Sandra Kennedy (D-AZ), Corp. Comm.
Sheila Oliver (D-NJ), Lt. Governor
Julianna Stratton (D-IL), Lt. Governor
Shirley Weber (D-CA), Secretary of State

 

Stephanie Garcia Richard (D-NM), Land Commissoner
Nellie Gorbea (D-RI), Secretary of State
Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM), Governor
Lea Marquez Peterson (R-AZ), Corp. Comm.
Susanna Mendoza (D-IL, Comptroller
Jeanette Nunez (R-FL), Lt. Governor
Anna Tovar (D-AZ), Corp. Comm.

  Fiona Ma (D-CA), Treasurer
Betty Yee (D-CA), State Controller
Kimberly Yee (R-AZ), Treasurer
1
Native American/Alaska Native (1D)
2
Multiracial (2D)
   
  Peggy Flanagan (D-MN), Lt. Governor   Kathleen McGuiness (D-DE), Auditor (Multiracial)
Sabina Matos (D-RI), Lt. Governor (Black, Latina)
   

State Legislators
605

Women of color are 26.5% of the 2,288 women state legislators serving nationwide. They constitute 8.2% of the total 7,383 state legislators. In addition, there are 31 women of color serving in the legislatures of the U.S. Territories (American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the Northern Mariana Islands) and on the D.C. City Council. The record high for women of color serving in state legislatures was 607, set between June 22, 2021 and June 30, 2021. 

578 D
 
 

25 Republicans, 1 NP, 1 Progressive

  Senate   House   Total*
  D   R   Other Total   D   R   Other Total   D   R   Other Total
Black 80 1 - 81   258 2 - 260   338 3 - 341
Asian Pacific Islander 15 - - 15   36 3 - 39   51 3 - 54
Latina 36 4 - 40   87 7 - 94   123 11 - 134
Middle Eastern/North African 1 - - 1   5 - - 5   6 - - 6
Native American/Alaska Native 5 1 - 6   15 2 - 17   20 3   23
Multi-Racial 8 1 1 10   31 4 1 36   39 5 2 46
Totals 145 7 1 153   433 18 1 452   578 25 2 605
*Adding up all categories does not equal the total number of women of color because there is a legislator who is a woman of color but did not wish to be included in the above categories. This figure does not include ten legislators whose race/ethnicity we could not confirm.

In 2021, twenty-two women of color serve in state legislative leadership:

Black Latina
Gloria Butler (D-GA), Senate Minority Leader Adrienne Benavidez (D-CO), House Speaker Pro Tem
Karen Camper (D-TN), House Minority Leader Teresa Benitez-Thompson (D-NV), House Majority Leader
Melony Griffith (D-MD), Senate President Pro Tem Minnie Gonzalez (D-CT), House Speaker Pro Tem
Charniele Herring (D-VA), House Majority Leader Eloise Gomez Reyes (D-CA), House Majority Leader
Adrienne Jones (D-MD), House Speaker Rebeccas Rios (D-AZ), Senate Minority Leader
Kimberly Lightford (D-IL), Senate Majority Leader M. Teresa Ruiz (D-NJ), Senate President Pro Tem
Louise Lucas (D-VA), Senate President Pro Tem Asian Pacific Islander
Joanna E. McClinton (D-PA), House Minority Leader Della Au Bellatti (D-HI), House Majority Leader
Crystal D. Peoples-Stokes (D-NY), House Majority Leader  
Sheree L. Sample-Hughes (D-MD), House Speaker Pro Tem  
Sheryl W. Stapleton (D-NM), House Majority Leader Multi-Racial
Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-NY), Senate President Pro Tem/Majority Leader Michelle Kidani (D-HI), Senate President Pro Tem (Asian Pacific Islander, Latina)
Emilia Sykes (D-OH), House Minority Leader Val Okimoto (R-HI), House Minority Leader (Asian Pacific Islander, White)

Women of color serve in every state.

  • Black women serve in 42 states, all except AZ, HI, ID, MT, NE, SD, ND, VT.
  • Asian Pacific Islander women serve in 22 states; CA, CT, GA, HI, ID, IL, KY, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, NH, NY, OH, OR, PA, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI.
  • Latina women serve in 25 states; AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL GA, IL, KS, MA, MN, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OR, RI, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, WV, WY.
  • Middle Eastern/North African women serve in 5 states; CO, FL, MD, NH, NY.
  • Native American/Alaska Native women serve in 12 states; AK, AZ, KS, MN, MS, MT, ND, NM, OR, SD, WA, WY.
  • Multi-Racial women serve in 21 states; AR, AZ, HI, ID, IL, KS, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, NE, NM, NV, NY, OK, RI, TX, VA, VT, WA.

Mayors
14

In the nation's 100 largest cities, fourteen women of color currently serve as mayors:

Black Latina
Muriel Bowser (D), Washington, DC, 2015-present Mary Casillas Salas (D*), Chula Vista, CA, 2015-present
Vi Alexander Lyles (D), Charlotte, NC, 2017-present Regina Romero (D), Tucson, AZ, 2019-present
Keisha Lance Bottoms (D*), Atlanta, GA, 2018-present Paulette M. Guajardo (D), Corpus Christi, TX, 2021-present
LaToya Cantrell (D), New Orleans, LA, 2018-present  
London Breed (D*), San Francisco, CA, 2018-present Asian Pacific Islander
Lori Lightfoot (D*), Chicago, IL, 2019-present Lily Mei (D*), Fremont, CA, 2016-present
Kim Janey (D), Boston, MA, 2021-present, acting Karen K. Goh (R*), Bakersfield, CA, 2017-present
Tishaura Jones (D*), St. Louis, MO, 2021-present Farrah Khan (D*), Irvine, CA, 2020-present

*Elected in nonpartisan races.

 

 

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