On Sunday, Carlos Alvarado Quesada won the presidential election in Costa Rica, but it was his vice president who made history.
Economist and longtime politician Epsy Campbell Barr is the first Afro-Costa Rican to be elected to that office.
She serves in the legislative faction of the Citizens’ Action Party, the ticket on which she and Alvarado Quesada ran.
She was named for her father's mother, who moved from Jamaica to Costa Rica, where Campbell Barr was born, according to Latin American television channel Telesur.
During the election, she reached out to black Costa Ricans, saying she was “proudly” one of them and urging them to vote “for an inclusive Costa Rica, a Costa Rica where we have a place.”
Rights for women and LGBT Costa Ricans took center stage in the election.
The Washington Post's Joshua Partlow wrote,
This year, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruled that member countries should allow same-sex marriage. This decision prompted upheaval in Costa Rica’s race and improved the chances of Fabricio Alvarado, a legislator from a party supported by religious conservatives.
The first female vice president in Costa Rica's history, Victoria Garrón de Doryan, was elected in 1986.
Thelma Curling Rodríguez was the first Afro-Costa Rican lawmaker, serving from 1982 to 1986.
Costa Rica elected its first female president, Laura Chinchilla, in 2010.