Afro-Latina seeks the Costa Rican Presidency

Afro-Latina, Epsy Campbell Barr, is seeking the Costa Rican Presidency. If she wins she will be the first Afro-Latina to serve as President of a Country. Her bid differs from any other attempt from previous female candidates because she has the possibility to run as candidate of the top opposition party.

Epsy Campbell Barr, born in 1963, is of Jamaican and native Costa Rican descent. Her grandparents were a part of the great migration of Jamaican immigrants in the 1900s. She grew up in Costa Rican primary schools and attended the University of Costa Rica and Regional Headquarters of the Limon province to obtain her Bachelor’s Degree. Around this time she also became a mother. Campbell Barr holds a Master’s degree in Development Cooperation.

Campbell’s political career began in 1996, when she founded the Women’s Forum for Central American Integration of the Network of Afro-Caribbean and Afro-Latin Women. She has also served on various organizations such as the Center for Women of African Descent and the Black Parliaments of the Americas, but her place on the national scale was cemented she served as Vice Presidential Candidate for the Partido Acción Ciudadana or the Citizen Action Party (PAC) in 2006.

In 2006, PAC, which is the nation’s second largest political party, almost secured the Costa Rican Presidency with the Ottón Solís and Epsy Cambell Barr ticket. The 2006 Solís-Campbell ticket barely lost the presidency to Oscar Arias and the Partido Liberación Nacional (PLN/National Liberation Party) by a margin of as little as one to two percent. She ran for Presidential candidate of PAC in 2010, but lost to Ottón Solís, who lost to current Costa Rican President, Laura Chinchilla. Chinchilla is the first Female President for Costa Rica.

Now she is running as Presidential Candidate for PAC again. Campbell, who is currently running her campaign in grassroots efforts similar that of Barack Obama’s, is not running against Ottón Solís but against several others, who include Juan Carlos Mendoza, Rónald Solís, and Luis Guillermo Solís. A vote on who will be PAC’s presidential candidate will take place on July 21st. The winner will then take on other Presidential candidates on in February 2014.

Tatiana M. Brown is a native of Washington, D.C. who is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Arts degree in Broadcast Journalism at Hofstra University. She will graduate early in December 2014. Follow her @TatianaMBrown or check out her website, or contact her at

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