Sarah McBride, a prominent transgender advocate who made history in 2016 by becoming the first openly trans person to ever address a major political party’s convention, announced Tuesday that she’s running for office in her home state of Delaware.
McBride will run for Delaware’s 1st Senate District, where incumbent Harris McDowell, a fellow Democrat, announced July 1 that he would retire in 2020. The district covers Bellefonte, Claymont and parts of Wilmington, the state’s largest and most populous city.
“I’ve spent my life fighting for people to have dignity, peace of mind, and a fair shot at staying afloat and getting ahead,” McBride said in a statement shared with NBC News. “Sen. McDowell’s retirement at the end of this term is a well-deserved cap on a remarkable career of public service, and now our neighbors need someone who will continue to fight for them.”
McBride, currently a spokesperson for LGBTQ advocacy group Human Rights Campaign, first made national headlines in 2012 while still a college student. A day after stepping down as American University’s student body president, McBride came out as trans in the school’s student-run newspaper. During her time in college, McBride also interned in the Obama White House, becoming “the first openly transgender woman to work in the White House in any capacity,” according to her campaign announcement.
Should McBride be elected next year, she would be America’s first openly transgender state senator. According to the Victory Institute, there are currently 715 openly LGBTQ elected officials nationwide.