Maribyrnong’s youngest ever mayor hopes his election will help inspire other young people and break “the bamboo ceiling”.
River Ward councillor Anthony Tran, 22, last week become one of the youngest councillors to ever become mayor in Victoria’s history.
Cr Tran is serving his first term on council and step into the role after 12 months as deputy mayor.
Elected by his fellow councillors during a special meeting on Tuesday night, Cr Tran – the son of Vietnamese refugees – thanked his family for their support in a speech delivered in both English and Vietnamese.
He thanked the community elders who had “put faith in” the second generation.
“Without your guidance, without your assistance, without the shoulders of giants on which we climb, we would not be here,” he said.
“But I think tonight is more than just electing a new mayor… tonight I hope to set a precedent and that precedent is that for more young people – the youth of diverse cultural communities – to find the courage and to find the ability to step up into this world that for so long, for far too long, has been dominated by a particular, a singular, demographic.”
Cr Tran said he hoped his representation can inspire other young people to follow their dreams.
“When there is representation, when people feel represented, when they see people who look like them… they feel inspired, and when you’re inspired you dream to be more, to break the ceiling – the ceiling that at I call with the Asian community in particular the “bamboo ceiling”, one that has been placed on us for far too long.”
Long-serving councillor Sarah Carter was elected deputy mayor at the meeting.