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Carol Moseley Braun: A Featured Biography

Carol Moseley Braun, 1993-1999

Carol Moseley Braun served in the United States Senate from 1993 to 1999 as a Democrat from Illinois. Born in Chicago in 1947, Moseley Braun came of age in the midst of the civil rights movement and pursued a career in law. She became an Illinois state representative in 1977 and then served four years as Recorder of Deeds for Cook County, Illinois, the first African American elected to a Cook County executive position. In 1992 she defeated both the Democratic incumbent and the Republican challenger for a seat in the U.S. Senate, becoming the first female senator from Illinois and the first African American woman to serve in the Senate. As a senator, Moseley Braun sponsored progressive education bills and campaigned for gun control. In 1999 she became the U.S. ambassador to New Zealand, a position she held until 2001. Moseley Braun ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination for president in 2004. Moseley Braun was interviewed for the Senate Oral History Project in 1999 and again in 2017 for the Women of the Senate Oral History Project.

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