Local minorities react to Obama's win - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Fanna Haile-Selassie

Local minorities react to Obama's win

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ROCHESTER, MN (FOX 47) -- Tuesday night, the nation and the much of the world witnessed an historic election in the United States as Obama was elected President. For many minority residents, the win struck on a personal level.

Joyce Gibbs says, "I just did a little victory dance. I was just so happy."

Joyce Gibbs says her family was the first black family to join the Rochester community in 1963.

Rochester Public Schools recognized her late husband, George Gibbs, by naming the new elementary school after him.

Gibbs says George was always into politics and wishes he were alive to see the moment when a black candidate actually was elected president.

Gibbs says, "And I said, George, you know, are you listening?"

At 75-years-old and having come from the south, Gibbs says she remembers a lot of hate and prejudice and recognizes it still today.

But she also says this election proves that the country is moving forward.

Gibbs says, "People talk about, do you think we'd ever live to see the day. Of course not, not in my lifetime. But it's reality, and I really feel the country, of course the majority, have rallied around the fact that this is the change that we need."

It's not just blacks who care deeply about the race of the next president. Carmen Estelle Souchet says it's all minorities.

Souchet says, "Many people don't realize that Hispanic people and people of other minority groups, including Somalis and other groups here in Rochester, are suffering or under the same constraints that African Americans are under in this country and in Rochester."

Souchet has a Puerto Rican background, and she says she was elated when she heard the presidential news.

She's calling the event our generation's unforgettable moment.

Gibbs says she recognizes that not everyone is ready to jump on board for change. She says she is worried that some people may scrutinize Obama's administration too harshly because of high expectations.

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