County political “trailblazers” honored during Black History Month
Photo: Walls Mayor Keidron Henderson is among the political “trailblazers” honored during Black History Month event. (Courtesy photo)
The Democratic County Democratic Executive Committee (DCDEC) is announcing the “Salute to the Trailblazers of DeSoto County Politics,” in commemoration of Black History Month. This event is being held at the Southaven Public Library, on Tuesday, Feb. 28, from 5-7 p.m.
The event will honor four African American politicians who have made history here in DeSoto County: Mayor Keidron Henderson, Alderwoman LaShonda Johnson, District 40 state Rep. Hester Jackson-McCray, and Dr. Leslie Burl McLemore.
“We are proud to honor these four Democrats who are trailblazers in every sense of the word,” said DCDEC Chair Dr. Deborah Williams. “This event is a unique opportunity to meet and celebrate these wonderful politicians who are an inspiration for new candidates who want to win office in DeSoto County.”
Mayor Henderson is the first Black mayor of Walls, and the first African American to hold the office of Mayor in DeSoto County since the 1800s. Alderwoman Johnson, the librarian at Horn Lake Intermediate School, is the first African American woman elected to a municipal seat in Horn Lake since reconstruction. Representative Jackson-McCray is the first African American to represent DeSoto County in the Mississippi Legislature, and just the third African American to represent a majority-white legislative district since Reconstruction. Dr. Leslie Burl McLemore, a former political science professor and longtime civil rights activist, made history in Walls as one of two African American men to ever run and win an alderman seat there.
Williams believes Democrats have a unique opportunity in 2023 to do their part to shift history in DeSoto County. “This begins with knowing the history of politics here,” said Williams. “We must honor those who were the first to be successful, to learn from their experiences, and to use this knowledge to support every democratic candidate running this November, each of whom is passionate and determined to have a voice in the political process.”