Despite the progress the city and state might have made in the nearly 40 years since the Boston busing crisis, there’s still a racist stigma associated with the state’s largest city.

Four decades after the crisis, video footage of the busing riots were used to introduce Boston in “The Departed.”

In recent years, a columnist suggested that Celtic Kevin Garnett didn’t want to come to Boston because of the “history of bigotry against African-American people in Boston.”

Leaders said the growing diversity of city and state officials including Thursday’s nomination of the state’s first black chief justice is important for the minority community.

“It’s important that people see themselves mirrored in every facet of society, especially in leadership roles and roles of positive influence,” said City Councilor Ayanna Pressley, who made history earlier this year when she became the first black woman to serve on the council.

There’s been other pro-gress made in recent years.

Gov. Deval Patrick’s election in 2006 made him the state’s first black governor and only the second elected in the nation. Carol Johnson has led the city’s school system for the past three years and President Barack Obama won the state in 2008 with 61 percent of the vote.

But with Justice Roderick Ireland’s nomination to head the state Supreme Judicial Court, leaders were still not confident it would remove the stigma associated with the city.