Central Falls elects Rivera as first-ever woman mayor

Blackstone Valley

CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. (WPRI) – City Council President Maria Rivera has declared victory, making her the city’s first-ever female mayor.

Rivera defeated former police chief Joseph Moran in the nonpartisan race.

“Thousands of Central Falls residents used the power of their vote in this historical election,” Rivera said in a statement. “I’m overwhelmed by the incredible support of the city’s voters and the love our community has shown throughout this campaign.”

“I’m humbled to not only represent the residents of this great city, but to continue the important progress built by Mayor Diossa,” she continued. “My work will start with prioritizing the health of our families and small businesses who have been dramatically impacted by COVID-19. Our city is resilient and together we’ll keep our important progress going. I’m ready to get to work.”

The win signals a change in leadership for the one-square-mile city, as the current mayor, James Diossa, is leaving office due to term limits after eight years.

Rivera ran on a campaign promise to improve the social and racial injustices in the city and to advocate for immigrants. Moran ran on a pro-law enforcement platform that included a promise to improve the safety and security of the city.

Diossa endorsed Rivera, who received 74% of the vote in a three-way nonpartisan preliminary election in September. Moran was far behind at 17%.

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