Hispanics are now the largest minority group in Wisconsin, according to figures released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau.
People who identified as Hispanic make up 6.34% of the population, compared to 6.26% for African-American, the next largest minority group.
“It happened earlier than I thought,” said Enrique Figueroa, an associate professor and director of the Roberto Hernández Center at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
From 2010 to 2013, Wisconsin’s population increased by 53,653 people — slightly less than 1%. Hispanics accounted for roughly half of that growth.
The non-Hispanic white population declined by less than a percent to 4,739,713, and makes up 82.5% of the state’s population.
Strong growth in the Hispanic population is a trend that goes back decades. It nearly quintupled since 1980, increasing from 62,972 to 363,925.