News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Thurs. Nov. 7, 2018: While Georgia’s gubernatorial race remains too close to call with Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams refusing to give up, one Caribbean national had something to celebrate Tuesday night.
Donna McLeod, a mother, grandmother and resident of House District 105 in Gwinnett County, Georgia, made history by becoming the first Jamaican woman elected to the Georgia House of Representatives District 105.
The Kingston-born, McLeod, beat Republican Donna Sheldon by 58 percent or14,291 votes in the open race, after Republican Joyce Chandler said earlier this year, she will not seek re-election. A total 24,491 votes were cast in the race.
“I want to thank everyone who voted for me, and even if you didn’t vote for me, I am prepared to serve everyone in our district,” McLeod posted on her site and social media accounts Tuesday night. “In order for our district to continue to thrive we need to work together. I promise to keep you informed and involved because the greatness in our country requires our participation.”
McLeod has been one of the most active members of the Gwinnett County Democratic Party over the past 18 years. Since 2008, she has been a grassroots organizer, registering new voters and educating Gwinnett County residents on local, county, state, and federal government processes.
The Democratic candidate had lost her previous bid for the highly competitive Gwinnett-based seat in 2016 against Chandler.
McLeod is also a small business owner and holds a degree in chemical engineering. She listed health care, education and transportation as her main priorities.
The racial makeup of the county is 53.3 percent White, 23.6 percent black or African-American, 20.1 percent Latino and 10.6 percent Asian. Gwinnett county had become more black and less white between 2000 and 2014.
In 2016, Hillary Clinton became the first Democrat to win Gwinnett County since 1976, when Georgia native Jimmy Carter won every county in the state.
Gwinnett County was one of the places in Georgia hampered by voter suppression; 35.4 percent of the voter registrations were challenged here.