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ST. LOUIS – Even in the year 2022, there are several African American leaders holding positions across the metro area for the first time in history. Mayor David Goins now leading Alton, Illinois.

His time as a public servant behind the badge and as a pastor leading from the pulpit put him in a position to become the first Black mayor in Alton’s history. Alton was founded in 1837. Goins beat out two-term Mayor Brant Walker and was sworn in in May of 2021. He called the moment “huge” and “historic” and said he hopes to inspire young people of color to chase their dreams. 

Goins is a proud product of Alton High School and the College of the Ozarks in Clarksville, Arkansas. He went on to serve with the Alton Police Department for 25 years and as the pastor of Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church. He’s also a member of the Alton School Board. Goins says he plans to use those experiences connecting with the community on both a physical and spiritual level to historically hold his position leading the city of Alton.

Blair’s Black History Moment highlights the history, success, and contributions of African Americans, both past and present, across the St. Louis region. If you would like to highlight a part of Black History dear to the St. Louis area, please send an email to as we recognize people, places, and events crucial to building the St. Louis community.