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Mayor Colin Byrd On Greenbelt's Reckoning With Its Racial History

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Office of the Mayor
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Colin A. Byrd, a University of Md. graduate and former Greenbelt City Councilman, has served as the Mayor of Greenbelt since 2019.

Today, it’s Midday with the Mayor. Mayor Colin Byrd joins us. He’s a progressive Democrat who was elected in 2019 at the age of 27, as the youngest Mayor ever elected to lead the city of Greenbelt, Maryland, his native city.

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African American workers helped build Greenbelt in 1937, but for decades were barred from living in the racially segregated community. (Greenbelt MuseumCollection)

One of the Mayor’s initiatives concerns reparations for African Americans and Indigenous people who, for decades after the town's creation as a planned community in 1937, were discriminated against in a racially segregated Greenbelt.

In a couple of months, voters in the historic Maryland city will have a chance to weigh in on the issue. The reparations referendum that Mayor Byrd proposed last spring will appear on the November 2nd ballot.

Mayor Byrd joins Tom on Zoom from Greenbelt.