OAKLAND (BCN) Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said today that she's "grateful and humbled" that she was re-elected to a second term in Tuesday's election with 56 percent of the vote, despite facing nine challengers.
Speaking to reporters at the St. Vincent de Paul building, which is being turned into a year-around shelter for 100 people, Schaaf said, "I'm glad to continue as the mayor of a city that is inclusionary and diverse and believes in social justice and fighting for what is right."
Schaaf said she wants to "obliterate the disparities" that she said exist between the rich and the poor.
The mayor said, "That's why I've chosen St. Vincent de Paul for this news conference, because it serves systematically marginalized people" who she said are victims of a "racist" past.
"We have a lot of work to do but we can accomplish great things," Schaaf said.
Referring to the city's growing homeless problem, Schaaf said, "We want to make sure every member of our community is housed."
The mayor said she's "encouraged" that most or all of the key people in her administration, including Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick, will remain in their posts.
"I'm very pleased with the performance of the police chief," Schaaf said.
Schaaf had to defeat incumbent Mayor Jean Quan, City Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan and other serious candidates to win the 2014 election but this year she faced a weaker field that didn't include anyone who had previously held elective office.
Nonprofit executive director Cat Brooks, who's widely known as the leader of the activist group the Anti Police-Terror Project, finished second with 23 percent of the vote and civil rights attorney Pamela Price was third with 12.6 percent.
None of the other challengers received more than 2 percent of the vote.
Schaaf said that as of 2:30 p.m. today Brooks and Price hadn't contacted her to congratulate her on her victory but said she doesn't hold any grudges against them even though campaign forums were contentious at times.
Schaaf said, "This is Oakland and we're a passionate city. Everyone who ran for mayor had good intentions and I expect that Cat Brooks and Pamela Price will continue to be passionate voices."