Vice President Elect Kamala Harris’ victory elicits emotional responses across the country

Local News

(WFRV) — As only the third woman to run as vice president on a major party ticket, and the first to win the position, Kamala Harris made history over the weekend.

Her election also has inspired women of all kinds — all around the country.

“She is the culmination if you will of a multiplicity of women of color, a multiplicity of communities can now see themselves in her and that just gives me such great pride,” Karen Nelson, Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator for the City of Appleton told Local 5 Monday.

Many are feeling pride in Harris’ accomplishment.

“To have that validation and that affirmation that women and specifically women of color can be elected into that high of office is just such an incredible moment in our nation’s history,” Alicia Johnson, Women’s Center Director at UW – Oshkosh said.

The 2020 election saw high voter turnout across the board, “but it was really black women and women of color who mobilized the vote and mobilized voters who had long been disenfranchised from the system that really made an impact and a difference in this election,” Johnson said.

Nelson added, “When we vote, we can make a difference and when we can make that difference we can open new doors and new frontiers.”

As a multi-racial women, Harris represents those new frontiers to many.

“For many students that I’ve talked to that hold multi-racial identities, it’s often a struggle to be forced into one box,” Johnson said, “but to be recognized for all identities I think is really important.”

Nelson says the Vice President Elect’s situation is based off of so much more than those she represents.

“We don’t have to worry about a person who’s representing just for representation sake, but rather having someone who has earned the right through her own credentials who happens to be a woman of color,” she said.

That, Nelson says, is something to aspire to: “It’s going to inspire at so many levels, and that’s why the sky is now the limit.”

Harris is set to be sworn into office on January 20th, 2021.

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