Inauguration of Governor L. Douglas Wilder
L. Douglas Wilder was governor of Virginia from 1990 until 1994. His was a political career of many firsts: the grandson of slaves, he was the first African American elected governor of any state in America. He was the first black member of the state senate in the twentieth century. And he was the first African American to win statewide office in Virginia when he was elected lieutenant governor in 1985. A Democrat, he ran briefly for United States president in 1991 and in 2004 was elected mayor of Richmond, serving until 2008. He is photographed here (center) at his gubernatorial inauguration, with Lieutenant Governor Don Beyer and Attorney General Mary Sue Terry. Terry, a sitting attorney general, had been widely expected to contest Wilder for the party's nomination for governor, but chose to avoid a fight and sought a second term instead.