SALEM, Ore. — Republicans in the Oregon Senate have chosen Sen. Jackie Winters to be their new leader.

The 80-year-old who represents Salem becomes the first black person to lead an Oregon legislative caucus.

She’s one of the longest-serving members of the state Senate, having first been elected in 2003. She had earlier been a member of the House.

Winters said Wednesday that leadership requires the ability to work with others, and she’s always willing to listen and compromise to achieve goals.

Senate President Peter Courtney, a Democrat, praised the selection. He says Winters is a true Oregonian, and her wisdom and sense of fairness will make her an exceptional leader.

Winters replaces Sen. Ted Ferrioli, the John Day Republican who stepped down to take a position with the Northwest Power & Conservation Council.