Meet Jaylen Smith, an 18-year-old college freshman, who became the youngest Black mayor in U.S. history after being elected mayor in the town of Earle, Arkansas.
Smith has been elected mayor of Earle, a small town in Arkansas with a population of 1,831. He reportedly received 235 votes while his opponent, Nemi Matthews, got 185 votes, according to CNN. He will be officially sworn in as mayor during the first week of January.
Smith, who just recently graduated from Earle High School, said he decided to run for mayor at the start of his senior year in high school. Having held various leadership positions in the school including being president of the student government association, he has always been passionate about serving his community.
“I didn’t run to make a name for myself,” Smith said. “I ran because I wanted to help my community and move my community in the direction that it needed to be moved in.”
As a mayor, Smith says that he plans to focus on public safety, transportation, and jobs for the youth. He also wanted to rebuild the city by removing abandoned houses and building a grocery store.