With the election of Jenny Durkan Tuesday night, Seattle has its first female mayor in nearly a century—and its first out lesbian mayor ever.
Durkan won 61% of the vote, reports The Seattle Times, more than 21 points ahead of opponent Cary Moon, a fellow Democrat.
“We were flying this plane as we were building it,” Durkan joked in her acceptance speech. “It’s been a great journey. It’s been a long but fast journey and I’m so proud of the inclusive campaign that we’ve built.”
A former federal prosecutor, Durkan was appointed U.S. attorney for the Western District of Washington by President Obama in 2009.
“We are thrilled Jenny will become the first lesbian mayor of Seattle—and just the second woman elected to the position,” said Aisha C. Moodie-Mills, president of the Victory Fund, which supports LGBT candidates across the country. “While Seattle voters chose Jenny because of her proven track record of leading innovative reforms and fighting for all communities, it is also an undeniably proud moment for the LGBTQ community, which continues to see this strong leader break down barriers.”
Durkan’s win comes as Seattle emerges from a dark political scandal: Mayor Ed Murray resigned earlier this year amid accusations he sexually abused younger men. (Murray, who is openly gay, denies the charges.)
The only other out lesbian mayor of a major U.S. city is Salt Lake City’s Jackie Biskupski. Cathy Woolard ran for mayor of Atlanta, but came in third behind Keisha Lance Bottoms and Mary Norwood, who will enter a runoff election next month.
Durkan, who takes office November 28, celebrated victory with a Seattle mainstay: A meal at Dick’s Drive-In.
— Jenny Durkan (@JennyDurkan) November 8, 2017