TEXAS CITY, Texas - Texas City has elected its first Black mayor.
With a population of around 50,000, Texas City sits in Galveston County and is known for its port, refineries, and having the longest man-made fishing pier in the world. Now it has something else for the history books.
The Gulf Coast town has its first Black mayor.
“I was supposed to be the first black President of the United States but Barack beat me to that,” laughs Texas City Mayor-Elect Dedrick Johnson. It may not be the Oval Office but landing in the big office in City Hall is quite an accomplishment, especially for Johnson who is the first African American to hold the title here. “Being the first African American anything comes with a great deal of responsibility.”
Before being elected to the top spot in town, Johnson grew up in Texas City.
“I've worked at some pizza places. I've shelved books at the library. I've cut people's grass.”
Raised by a single mom with his grandparents very active in his life, living right across the street, Johnson actually dreamed of heading the city someday.
“So many people saw me as a leader. While the odds may have been stacked against me I just had so many positive influences telling me what I can do.”
After landing an academic scholarship to the University of Texas, Johnson went on to become a math teacher in Texas City for 15 years, a City Commissioner in town for nearly 20 and for the past decade Johnson has worked at Marathon Oil Refinery.
Now add Mayor to his many titles, as he replaces Mayor Matt Doyle. “His father was also the mayor of this city. So the Doyle's have been running and leading this city for about 26 of the last 30 years. So yes those are some pretty big shoes to fill.”
Johnson is a father of four beautiful babies, Deuce, Darian, Dionne and Donovan. He says he's still on cloud nine after winning the election and grateful for the opportunity.
“I want to thank my family, my children who stood beside me throughout this journey. They knocked on doors with me. The best way for me to thank everybody is to do what you all elected me to do and that's to be a great leader of this city”.
Johnson is also an Associate Pastor at Greater Saint Matthews Church in Hitchcock and says his plan for Texas City is to keep the city growing and leave it in better shape for the next mayor just as his predecessor did for him.