Mattie Parker Is Next Fort Worth Mayor in Win for GOP

Mattie Parker Is Next Fort Worth Mayor in Win for GOP Mattie Parker Is Next Fort Worth Mayor in Win for GOP Mattie Parker talks about her vision for Fort Worth during a mayoral runoff forum with Deborah Peoples Wednesday, May 12, 2021, at Texas A&M University School of Law in Fort Worth, Texas. (Yffy Yossifor/Star-Telegram via AP)

Sunday, 06 June 2021 05:48 AM

Mattie Parker declared victory Saturday as the next mayor of Fort Worth, Texas, keeping it one of America's biggest cities with a GOP mayor.

The 37-year-old Parker was in a runoff with Deborah Peoples, a former Democratic county chairwoman who would have been the city’s first Black mayor. Peoples conceded defeat as Parker had more than 53% of the vote with ballots still being counted.

Parker will succeed her former boss, outgoing Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, a Republican who is retiring after 10 years and was the longest-serving mayor of the booming city that is closing in on 1 million residents.

Although the election was officially nonpartisan, it resembled a Texas battleground race: Republican Gov. Greg Abbott endorsed Parker and county GOP officials brought in activists from around the state to stop Democrats who craved a high-profile win in Texas after a letdown in 2020.

Parker is a former chief of staff to Price and founder of an educational coalition. She did not commit in her campaign to backing a police civilian review board in a city where police shootings and the 2016 arrest of a Black woman who called 911 have elevated tensions and led to protests.

In August, a white former Fort Worth police officer is scheduled to stand trial on murder charges in the shooting death of Atatiana Jefferson, a Black woman who was fatally shot through a window in 2019.