Minorities Made Impressive Showings at the US Election

History was made in Helena city, Montana state when Wilmot Collins who came to the US as a refugee from Liberia about 23 years ago unseated Helena Mayor of 16 years, Jim Smith. This is a landmark victory not just for Africans in the United States, but the entire minority community at large. He is Montana’s first black Mayor. The African American barber ET Johnson was elected Helena mayor many years before Helena was incorporated as a city in Montana state.

Wilmot Collins Left Liberia at age 31, he has lived and worked in Helena for the last 23 years and works for the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services (Child & Family Services Division). He is also an adjunct instructor at Helena College – University of Montana and a member of the U.S. Navy Reserves. Wilmot has a BA in Political Science and Sociology, a Masters of Science Human Resources Management and just completed his course work for his PhD in forensic Psychology. Collins is married to Maddie Collins, a Registered Nurse at VA Montana and a member of the U.S. Army Reserves. They have two children, Bliss, a junior at the University of Montana, and Jaymie, a member of the U.S. Navy.

The 54-year-old former refugee of a civil war, community activist and progressive political newcomer said he was inspired by the message of last year from Barack Obama, who repeatedly urged Americans to stop complaining and get involved in the process. He identified his priorities as affordable housing and solutions for teen homelessness.

“I never thought about it,” said Collins after the election “My only thing was, I hope they can give me a second chance. That’s all I needed. This country and this state and this city provided me a second chance.”

Many states where the minorities did well at the Nov.7 election are Virginia and New Jersey which elected African Americans as their lieutenant governors. St Paul city in Minnesota also elected its first African American mayor, transgender persons were also elected into the Minneapolis City Council and Virginia statehouse.

It is really a new dawn for the minority community, America has further proven to the world that it is a land of opportunities for all.