Transgender Candidates



In 2015, I conducted a project (coauthored with Andrew Reynolds) to examine the success rates of transgender and gender-diverse candidates for office around the world. We developed an original dataset of nearly 130 unique candidates (as of November 2015) over nearly 40 years representing at least 30 countries. I presented this research to the British Parliament, London School of Economics, and the 2015 International LGBT Leaders Conference.


I continue to track transgender candidates in the United States,

often with the help of people around the country who take the time to contact me. Thank you!

Danica Roem's victory
Screen Shot 2020-11-11 at 3.10.35 PM
Andrea Jenkins' victory
Esquire coverage
2015 Report cover
Vegas panel
Parliament panelists
Parliament 3
Notes for Journalists Covering Transgender Issues:
Please see the Trans Journalists Association's
style guide for covering transgender people and issues.
List of Transgender Candidates in the U.S.

2021 Candidacies: 21 so far

 2020: 49 | 2019: 22 | 2018: 53 | 2017: 25

2021 Victories: 3 so far

2020: 16| 2019: 14 | 2018: 9 | 2017: 10

Last updated Thursday Oct 14, 2021

9:00 am Eastern



green = victory

*=won primary



State Senate

State House

County Commission/Executive

City Council


Other Local Offices


2021 Notes

  • Elisa Crespo (D) ran for New York City Council (District 15, Bronx) in a special election on March 23. She came in fourth, though no candidate won a majority of votes. According to local reporting, the winner will be required to run for re-election in the June primary and then again in the general election in November. In April, Crespo announced she would not continue her candidacy in the June primary.

  • Bunnie Benton Cruse (D) is seeking an appointed (not elected) position to the New Mexico State House (District 28) following a legislator's departure to seek a vacant Congressional position.
  • Lillian Guetter is seeking an appointed (not elected) position to City Council in Moorhead, MN. 

  • Honey Mahogany (D) was elected to the Chair of the San Francisco Democratic Party. This is an internal party office, not a public office.

2022 Candidacies Already Announced

  • Billie Cooper announced she will run for City Supervisor (District 6) in San Francisco, CA, in 2022.

  • Janelle Crossley (D) announced she will run for the Pennsylvania House (District 199) in 2022.

  • Rachael Rose Luckey announced she will run for City Council (District 13) in Los Angeles, CA, in 2022.

  • Kendall Martinez-Wright announced she would run for the Missouri House (District 5) in 2022, but in Sept 2021 withdrew.

  • Lisa Middleton (D) announced she will run for the California Senate (District 28) in 2022.

  • Melissa Sue Robinson (D) announced she will run for Governor of Idaho in 2022.

Click here for a list of candidates who ran in 2020.

Click here for a list of candidates who ran in 2019.

Click here for a list of candidates who ran in 2018.

Click here for a list of candidates who ran in 2017.

This is the policy report format of this research project, published in October 2015 by the LGBTQ Representation and Rights Research Initiative. The data regarding candidates (at the time of publication) is included in the report's appendix. If you know of someone we missed, please email me!

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