Making ‘herstory,’ politicians and community members react to Mayor Cherelle Parker’s inauguration day

Cherelle Parker’s inauguration day prompted kudos and reflections from everyone, from the Pennsylvania House to small Philly business owners.

Cherelle Parker at her swearing in

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker at her historic inauguration at The Met on Jan. 2, 2024. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

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Cherelle Parker has officially stepped into her role as Philadelphia’s 100th mayor.

One day before the inauguration, Parker took oath in an unannounced, private ceremony, as reported by WHYY News’ Carmen Russell-Sluchansky. Still, Parker’s inauguration day kicked off the second day of 2024, making her the city’s first Black woman to take the office.

“Philadelphia, thank you for allowing me to be me,” Parker said during her speech.

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Award-winning actor and singer Sheryl Lee Ralph was among the list of speakers during the ceremony, at one point almost bringing her to tears.

“Philadelphia’s first female mayor is a Black queen,” Lee Ralph said.

Politicians, community members, actors, and advocates responded to the historic moment. WHYY News has curated several of these reactions.

Pennsylvania state Representative Jordan Harris was present first thing this morning.

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Pennsylvania state representative Malcom Kenyatta called Parker a “transformative mayor,” and posted a video.

Rue Landau, who is the first-ever openly LGBTQ City Council member, shared her proud moment officially joining the administration.

Philadelphians also took to their social media feeds to share their thoughts, such as MJ Adams, legal aid director.

Lifelong Philadelphian Melissa was impressed after listening to Parker’s hour-long speech.

Another community member and small business owner Minerva Quillen shared her invitation and posted some behind-the-scenes video of the inauguration ceremony.

There a lot of firsts this election cycle, which some Philadelphians welcomed with open arms, such as Noelle Foizen.

Representative Roni Green took to Twitter to congratulate the new mayor.

Speaker of the Pennsylvania house, representative Joanna McClinton, seemed exuberant  about Parker becoming the first Black woman to lead Philly.

City representative Sheila Hess posted photos of her ticket stubs to the Met Philly and her own comments of what the day means to her.

Some people, such as Jack Inacker, lauded the entertainment.

Other people focused on the new mayor’s actions on her first day in office.

Several members of the transition team, such as Lorraine Ballard and Tamir D. Harper, shared their announcements.

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