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Indybay Feature
City of Santa Rosa hires first lady African American as City Manager
by Naia Smith
Tuesday Dec 7th, 2021 5:04 PM
History is made after Santa Rosa elects its first Aftican American woman as city Manager.
Santa Rosa bridges a racial gap in politics by electing Maraskeshia Smith as the cities first African American City Manager. Smith's political background includes 21 years of government experience, not to mention roles as deputy city manager of Stockton, CA, city administrator of Oakland, CA, and director of public service in Cincinnati, OH. Smith's election "gives the city and the citizens of Santa Rosa a variety of new opportunities in programs that would benefit the locals living in the city."

The recent trend of hate crimes against Asian Americans in the Bay Area and Black Lives Matter protests across the U.S denotes serious barriers towards racial equality. Smith as City Manager will be a step towards racial equality by having a direct relationship with the black community and the Santa Rosa police department.

With Smith's term beginning on Jan 3rd, 2022, it will be interesting to see how she handles other pressing issues such as the COVID omicron variant, public welfare, as well the housing and homelessness crisis.
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