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St. Louis Voters Elect First Black Mayor With AM-Elections-Box

April 7, 1993

ST. LOUIS (AP) _ Freeman Bosley Jr., elected the city’s first black mayor, wants to shore up depressed neighborhoods and put more job training programs into motion, but he acknowledges that making his goals come true won’t be easy.

Bosley, the city’s circuit court clerk, easily defeated a relatively unknown Republican and two independent candidates Tuesday.

Voters, Bosley said, want to ″see a new attitude, an attitude of freshness, an attitude of togetherness, an attitude like we’re in this together and together we can make a difference.″

He will be inaugurated April 20, replacing Vince Schoemehl, who is retiring after 12 years.

The city hasn’t elected a Republican mayor since 1949. Bosley’s victory in a hotly contested, four-way Democratic primary in March virtually assured his election.

Bosley, 38, a lawyer, has promised to hire 100 new police officers and set up neighborhood stabilization programs that might include giving away vacant buildings and vacant lots.

He also wants to work with schools and labor organizations to establish more job training programs for the poor.

Selling his ideas - to business, the Board of Alderman, state lawmakers and his congressmen - is high on Bosley’s list of priorities.

He also wants to appoint a cabinet that looks like St. Louis - about half black and half white.

Bosley isn’t new to politics. He has been court clerk for 11 years and his father is a longtime alderman who once ran for mayor himself.

Bosley took a rest Wednesday after celebrating his victory well into the night Tuesday, said a spokesman, David Clohessy. He planned to take a short vacation.

Final unofficial returns gave Bosley 57,934 votes, or 66.5 percent, to Republican John O’Gorman’s 14,965, or 17.2 percent. Independents William Haas had 13,392 votes, or 15.4 percent, and James Garrison, a member of the Socialist Workers Party, had 790 votes, or less than 1 percent.

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