Seattle City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda is serving her first full week in office after winning the November general election.
Mosqueda’s election marks a shift on the council. She’s expected to be a more left-leaning official than her predecessor, Tim Burgess, who stepped down from the position this year.
Mosqueda has been an advocate for immigrant rights and organized labor for the past decade. If her oath-of-office speech is any indication, she's bringing the same priorities with her.
As Mosqueda took the podium at Seattle City Hall for her swearing in, supporters chanted her name and played Beyoncé from a speaker. At times, Mosqueda's speech resembled a victory rally for workers’ rights policies in Washington.
Mosqueda: “We have won on sick leave, won on wage theft, won on protections for hotel workers, won on secure scheduling... and we raised the minimum wage first, right here in our region, and that took over the nation."
Mosqueda has spent years organizing for worker rights, public health, and protections for immigrants and refugees. She also helped write the statewide paid sick leave initiative that voters passed in 2016. Most recently, Mosqueda worked as a campaign director for the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO.
Mosqueda: “Thank you for electing this Latina, this woman, this worker-advocate, this health care justice fighter, because I look forward to working with you on Seattle City Council to fight for an affordable Seattle for all.”
Mosqueda is a third-generation Mexican American, and says she grew up going to racial justice rallies with her parents.
With her election, the Seattle City Council remains majority female and is now majority people of color. Mosqueda and Lorena González (who just won re-election) are the council's two city-wide representatives.
Burgess, known as more of a centrist, announced earlier this year he would not run for council re-election. He endorsed Mosqueda for the seat.