George Garwood, Jr. elected the first black mayor in Utah history.

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First Black Mayor in Utah History
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George Garwood makes history in South Ogden

Utah's first black mayor calls it "a joyous day"

Wed, Nov 7, 2001

Standard-Examiner correspondent

The room exploded with cheers and champagne party poppers after George Garwood was elected the first black mayor in Utah.

It was a landslide victory for Garwood, who beat out his opponent Dent Mason by 2,010 to 776.

"It's a joyous day, not just for the citizens of South Ogden but also for the citizens in Utah. To look beyond the color of a person's skin and to see their character is a great thing," Garwood said.

Citing the examples of Martin Luther King, Jr, and Rosa Parks, Garwood proclaimed: "I've made history because of those who have gone before me. That's why I'm able to stand here today. I never dreamed of this six years ago."

Garwood said he plans to visit his mother in Atlanta later this week to celebrate her 80th birthday. Then, he said, he'll fly her to South Ogden when he's sworn into office in January.

Mason was the only candidate who didn't show up at the City Hall Tuesday night. Several attempts were made to contact him for comment, but he could not be reached. Incumbent Councilman John Bradley won't be returning to the council after barely losing to James Minster 1,224 to 1,253.

"I don't know what I could have done that was anything different. I went to every house in the city once and the majority of homes twice," Bradley said, adding that he will apply for Garwood's council seat that will now be open for a two-year term.

The other winner of the City Council was Vickie Mattson, who received the highest number of votes at 1,499. Candidate Nate Frost received 1,112 votes.

"I'm so grateful. I'm going to go out and learn everything I can and make the voters proud of me," said an emotional Mattson.

Minster, who was behind Bradley until the last precinct came in, said he was ecstatic with the results.

"I was nervous. I can't believe it was that close, but I think we all would have been happy with whoever the winners were.

"All of the candidates were outstanding. I'm going to go home now and get some sleep," Minster said.

Copyright 2001, Ogden Publishing Corporation

South Ogden City Hall
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South Ogden 84403
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