Historic First Win for Openly Transgender Candidate in Hawaii

November 8, 2006

Kim Coco Iwamoto Wins State-Level Board of Education Seat
Iwamoto is the First Openly Transgender Person Elected to a
State-Level Office in the US

(Washington, DC) — Yesterday's mid-term elections marked a historic first in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LBGT) movement for equality and civic engagement. With a comfortable victory garnering 81,532 votes, attorney Kim Coco Iwamoto was elected to Hawaii's state-level Board of Education (Oahu-at-Large), a non-partisan office. Ms. Iwamoto, an openly transgender woman, is a member of the National Center for Transgender Equality's (NCTE) Board of Advisors. Iwamoto holds a Juris Doctor from the University of New Mexico School of Law, is a volunteer guardian ad litem for the First Circuit Family Court, and is a frequent speaker at high schools and colleges on civil rights issues and community service.

"This is a truly historic win and marks an important first in the American political landscape, said Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality. "Kim Coco Iwamoto is an outstanding individual with a long history of pro bono legal work and volunteerism benefiting her home state. She will serve the people of Hawaii well."

There are currently only a limited number of openly transgender elected officials serving in the US and around the world. In the United States, Michelle Bruce serves on the City Council in Riverdale, GA and Jessica Orsini serves as an Alderman in Centralia, MO. There are also dozens of other openly transgender appointed public officials across the U.S. New Zealand's Georgina Beyer has served in Parliament since 1999; Aya Kamikawa was elected as a municipal official in Tokyo, Japan; Vladimir Luxuria was recently elected to Italy's Parliament.
As public education efforts aimed at ending misconceptions and prejudice against transgender individuals advance, more and more transgender people feel safe and comfortable living their lives openly. Concerned with the betterment of the country's economy, educational system, health care and security, candidates who also happen to be transgender are running for—and winning—political office.

To read more about Board of Education Member, Oahu-At-Large, Kim Coco Iwamoto, please visit her campaign Web site at www.kimcoco.com.

National Center for Transgender Equality
email: ncte@nctequality.org
phone: 202-903-0112
web: http://www.nctequality.org


Joy Carter said…
Congradulations to Ms. Iwamoto.

Joy Carter

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