The Democratic candidate for mayor, Cherelle Parker, would be the first woman to serve as Philadelphia mayor if elected on Nov. 7. Parker is a veteran of city and state politics who was raised by her grandparents in Northwest Philly. Check out the complete interview on today's episode of City Cast Philly 🎧
Why do you love Philly?
“Statistics say that someone coming from the humble beginnings that I come from, that I shouldn't be this close to this opportunity to do what no one like me has ever done before. ... I'm Black, and I'm a woman, and I've lived at the intersection of race and gender my entire life. But you need to know my village looks like the United Nations. ... I think about ... my white high school English teacher, Jeanette Jimenez, who taught me about Black women's literature, and said you need to read Maya Angelou and Ntozake Shange and Sonia Sanchez. If you read their work, they will show you yourself. And it will encourage you to move forward. I love Philly because I owe so much to this city.”
What’s the first thing that you would change if elected?
“We have to select a police commissioner. ... They need to immediately begin developing a comprehensive public safety plan for the city of Philadelphia. And we have to begin getting the leadership of every city department together, and any of our external partners ... everyone that we need in order to make our public health and safety our number one priority in the city of Philadelphia.”
What's one accomplishment you're most proud of?
“When I was in Harrisburg ... it was revenue for the school district when we needed new additional revenue because we had a structural deficit, hundreds of millions of dollars. Being able to deliver that was extremely important. And then it was the delinquent property taxes here in the city of Philadelphia, and using that revenue, along with an additional sales tax, to help with the funding of our municipal pension system.”