Evans Interview – Podcast June 19, 2023

Celebrating Our Second Independence Day. Karen McClelland welcomes Coral Evans, former Flagstaff Mayor, legislative candidate and current Northern Arizona Director for U.S. Senator Kelly on our newest federal holiday – Juneteenth.

Evans begins by saying, “Juneteenth is a holiday I had the opportunity to grow up celebrating and I think most African-Americans in the country have celebrated Juneteenth since its inception. But it is somewhat of a newer holiday for some of us who did not know about it, and so I do think it’s important that people understand why we have Juneteenth.”

She goes on to explain that, even after President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, many slaves were still not free. It was not until two years later on June 19th, 1865, when Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas that the last slaves were freed. That day became known as Juneteenth by the newly freed people in Texas. “It marks a very important holiday,” says Evans. “It marks our country’s second Independence Day. And it shows the value of never giving up hope in uncertain times. It shows the intention of a country to make sure that everyone has a shot at life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

Turning to her job for Sen. Kelly, Evans says, “The Senator is very committed to being a senator for all of the people in Arizona. Not just the metropolitan area…I appreciate the opportunity to be out there on his behalf speaking to people, understanding what the issues are, taking those back, and being able to talk to people about the work the Senator is doing.”

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