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This Day in Georgia History

March 17, 1955

Cynthia McKinney Born

Politician Cynthia McKinney was born in Atlanta. Being daughter to longtime state representative Billy McKinney, politics came natural for Cynthia. After graduating from the University of Southern California with a degree in international relations she taught at Spelman College, Atlanta University, and Agnes Scott College before being elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in 1988, where she served in the same chamber as her father - marking the first and only time in Georgia history that a father and daughter served at the same time in the same house). After four years in the General Assembly, McKinney successfully ran in Georgia’s new 11th congressional district in 1992, becoming the first African-American congresswoman from Georgia. She was reelected in 1994, but the next year the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the 11th district as having been unconstitutionally drawn by the General Assembly, which then forced redrawing congressional districts. In 1996, McKinney successfully ran in the new majority-white 4th congressional district. In the 2002 Democratic primary, she lost to challenger Denise Majette. In 2008, McKinney was the Green Party candidate for U.S. President.

Image of Cynthia McKinney Born View large image
Source: United States Congress