Ronald Kirk became the first person from the Global Majority to be elected mayor of Dallas, Texas, on June 5, 1995. He would serve until 2002, when he ran for United States Senate and lost to Republican John Cornyn. He went on to work as a partner in Vinson & Elkins, a Houston law firm. He was a lobbyist for Merrill Lynch and Energy Future Holdings.
Kirk, who was also the first black Secretary of State of Texas (from 1994-1995), was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as the United States Trade Representative. He was confirmed on March 18, 2009 by a 92-5 vote in the U.S. Senate. He stepped down from that position on Jan. 22, 2013.
Born in Austin, Texas, Kirk graduated from John H. Reagan High School, Austin College and the University of Texas Law School of Law.