COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – Evelyn “Mimi” Woodson has made an impact both as a Hispanic and as an elected official. She is a Columbus City Council member and county official representing District 7 and holds the title as the first Hispanic and longest-serving elected official in Georgia.
Woodson has served at a city council member for 27 years, she said her decision to originally run was influenced by God. She said she felt His guidance and trusted she was making the right decision based on what she felt when attending church and when she prayed.
“I’m really excited that God used me to show people that if you believe in Him and yourself, anything is possible and I am that living testimony. Being a woman, Latina, and only two years being in my city and I’ve been in office for 27 years,” said Woodson.
Although Woodson is originally from Puerto Rico, she decided to put down her duffle bag in Columbus after retiring from the U.S. Army. She said she knew Columbus was home when she realized she always made her way back to Georgia throughout her 15-year Army career and as one of the last members of the Women’s Army Corps.
Woodson has had to rerun for her seat as a city council member seven times throughout her 27 years in office. Each time she has had opposition, but continues to defend her seat. She thanks God for her success and believes His purpose for her is to show his children that anything is possible.
Woodson said one thing she has kept close during her career is her humility. She said despite having a challenging career it has been amazing and she has no regrets.
“I am a proud Latina, very proud. I am glad that my trials and tribulations have made me strong to be able to do this position, to be able to open doors and encourage others. It hasn’t been easy, very challenging,” said Woodson.
She thanks the people that have surrounded her throughout her career and credits a lot of her success to having a supportive village around her.
“I would say to the Latinas now, don’t be afraid. When someone tells you you can’t do something and you feel it in your heart and you feels it is your destiny go around them and make it happen,” said Woodson.
She urges other Hispanics and Latinos to get involved in the community and in decisions that will ultimately affect families for generations.
“I think it’s important that we embrace the American Dream because that’s what we’re here for, but at the same time don’t forget where you came from cause that’s what makes you who you are,” said Woodson.