ST. LOUIS – In the year 2020, the City of Ferguson swore in its first Black woman as mayor. When FOX 2 interviewed Ella Jones, she said Ferguson has an acre of diamonds right in its backyard.

Ella Jones beat out city council colleague Heather Robinette, 54% to 46% to win the three-year term on June 2. Jones has a degree in chemistry, served as a pastor in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and she has lived in Ferguson for 40 years. She stepped into office at a hectic time – battling the blows of the pandemic as well as picking up the pieces after turmoil following the deadly police shooting of Michael Brown. Protests continued in Ferguson after the death of George Floyd. This was Jones’ second time running for office with a mission to bring about change through inclusion and transparency.

Ella Jones said she remembers seeing whites-only signs growing up, but always knew these moments would come one day. Her induction gained national attention. A woman full of enthusiasm and personality, she said, “I believe fear is just false evidence appearing real, so we only defeat ourselves with what we tell ourselves.”

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 blair.ledet@tvstl.com as we recognize people, places, and events crucial to building the St. Louis community.