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Nov-13-2008 18:34printcommentsVideo

Silverton: Home of Nation's First Transgender Mayor (VIDEO)

Stu Rasmussen won the election for mayor of this rural Oregon town by a landslide.

Oregon transgender Mayor Stu Rasmussen
Photos courtesy: Stu Rasmussen

(SALEM, Ore.) - Another Oregon mayor is making headlines, but for some reason nobody is going after Stu Rasmussen for posing in a low cut top. America's first transgender mayor joins the former Mayor of Arlington, Oregon, Carmen Kontur Gronquist, who was blasted over bathing suit photos on MySpace earlier this year, in the ranks of unexpected and offbeat NW media celebrities. (see: MySpace Photos of Oregon Mayor Causing Stir in Arlington)

A very familiar face around Silverton, Stu is no stranger to politics. The last time Mayor Rasmussen held office, he wore men's clothing. He won't be wearing a suit and tie to work though, this mayor is into ladies fashions and make up.

Rasmussen says he is the candidate who will help Silverton keep its small town feel, even if his personal approach reflects the very latest surgical technology.

Appearing on "Good Morning America", Rasmussen said that the town went through the transition with him, and it wasn't always easy. "Obviously, it was shocking to them," he told ABC.

"We all kind of went through it together. It was pretty obvious I was making a change, it had to happen in my head. They were ready before I was."

The old Rasmussen

He says appearing as a woman is nothing new, but the idea of becoming one was.

"I just happen to be transgendered - something I didn't even know the word for until I discovered it on the Internet. I've been a crossdresser or transvestite my whole life, only 'coming out' recently and thereby discovering that life goes on very nicely."

Those who find it shocking might want to put their seatbelts on, because transgender may become a more widely used term in the near future.

ABC News reports that Tyra Banks' show "America's Next Top Model" will soon debut Isis, its first transgender contestant, when it begins its 11th season Sept. 3. It's a progressive move for a network reality series, but pushing the envelope, in the modeling realm and on TV, has become the MO of "ANTM": The show has cast multiple gay contestants, and last season crowned a plus-size model as its winner.

Rasmussen will head the popular and progressive city of Silverton in Oregon's Willamette Valley and its population of 9,588.

This video posted by The Oregonian on YouTube allows an opportunity to learn more about Stu Rasmussen:


Tim King is a former U.S. Marine with twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. In addition to his role as a war correspondent, this Los Angeles native serves as's Executive News Editor.
Tim spent the winter of 2006/07 in Afghanistan with Oregon troops. Tim recently returned from Iraq where he covered the war there while embedded with an Oregon Guard aviation unit. Serving the community in very real terms, is the nation's only truly independent high traffic news Website, affiliated with Google News and several other major search engines and news aggregators.
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Comments Leave a comment on this story.

All comments and messages are approved by people and self promotional links or unacceptable comments are denied.

Sebastian November 12, 2009 8:39 pm (Pacific time)

I find it heroic and those fake christians should stop blaming you. They are sick and you are healthy (i hope:-)

Tom P November 12, 2009 1:20 pm (Pacific time)

As long as he is a good mayor there shouldn't be an issue, but is the self-submitted picture of himself in a bra really necessary? Yikes

anonymous April 7, 2009 5:26 pm (Pacific time)

I lived in Silverton from 1969-1973. I remember the warmth and acceptance you felt there. I left the great nothwest to live in the "Bible belt" 12 years ago. I pray, no matter how long I am away that I always remember to view all human beings as uique, and respect their right to be individuals.

Anonymous February 18, 2009 6:24 pm (Pacific time)

We Oregonians are weird for accepting and judging someone for who they are on the inside and not what they look like on the outside? I feel sorry that you dont have the privledge of knowing who Stu really is. He has done so many wonderful things for our small community of Silverton. He truely is a brilliant person who is opening people's eyes and minds. Besides what gives you the right to judge us for electing someone who will best serve OUR town, not yours.

Anonymous November 20, 2008 9:50 am (Pacific time)

I think I'm going to be sick,you Oregonians are weird.

Sallie November 16, 2008 5:03 pm (Pacific time)

Stu, you were elected on your qualifications, not because you are a trans gender. Please, do us all a favor and stop showcasing your medical transformation. I would say this regardless of gender. It is very unattractive and is inappropriate. I don't want to see a mayor looking sleazy. Enough already!

EazyMoney November 14, 2008 10:33 am (Pacific time)

Actually Stu is very nice, he's been into my work to buy our products. Congrats.

Vic November 14, 2008 5:49 am (Pacific time)

Everyone that knows Stu likes him. Kudos to Silverton for judging a person for what they do and stand for rather than looks. Stu has contributed so much to the quality of life in the Silverton area, from his beautiful 1940s style Palace Theater to the music shows he produces and sponsors. We are lucky to have him. I seriously doubt any of his critics could begin to match his contributions to the community.

Anonymous November 13, 2008 8:11 pm (Pacific time)

What is this World coming to? Sick, that's all I have to say!

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