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Edwin M. Lee is new San Francisco mayor

The Chinese American is the first Asian American to lead San Francisco.

January 12, 2011|By Maria LaGanga, Los Angeles Times

City Administrator Edwin M. Lee was sworn in as San Francisco mayor Tuesday afternoon, the first Asian American head of this famously diverse city.

Flanked by former Mayor Willie Brown and Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, the civil rights attorney turned government worker soberly noted that he has his work cut out for him: helping the city dig out from a deep budget deficit and picking a new police chief.

Lee replaces Newsom, who was inaugurated Monday. Lee's selection as interim mayor got a unanimous vote from county supervisors.

"As a Chinese American, I am well aware of my community's long and troubled and proud history in this city," he told a crowd under the City Hall rotunda. "The San Francisco of old was directly involved in racism and neglect. The San Francisco that I fought as an attorney began to change."

And today? "Our struggle is here, and it is succeeding."

maria.laganga@latimes.com

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