‘It’s a significant step’: Roxbury residents embracing first female, black mayor

BOSTON — Residents in Roxbury and other diverse neighborhoods in Boston are embracing the first female and black mayor to take top office.

Acting Mayor Kim Janey, a longtime resident of Roxbury, took oath of office on Wednesday.

She focused much of her speech on racial equity, saying she’ll work to ensure  that minority-owned businesses have a fairer shot at city contracts.

Janey said she offers life experience “that is different from the men” who came before her.

“It’s exciting. I have a little girl. For her to grow up and know there’s a black woman mayor, gives her the goals to be able to strive for something great,” said Milena Jenkins, with M & Co. Hair Salon in Roxbury.

Janey replaces fellow Democrat Marty Walsh, who resigned from office on Monday to serve at labor secretary for President Biden.

The 55-year-old assured the public she will address the housing, food and transportation issues across the city and will work to close Boston’s wealth gap.

“Representation matters. If people can see themselves in those positions, it’s always a great thing,” said Steeve Joazard. “It’s significant. It’s a significant step.”

Janey hasn’t said whether she’ll seek a full term in office as a general election candidate in November.

If she enters the race, she’ll be up against a crowded field of candidates including some of her former council colleagues.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

Download the FREE Boston 25 News app for breaking news alerts.

Follow Boston 25 News on Facebook and Twitter. | Watch Boston 25 News NOW