New Hope, Texas, mayor Jess Herbst is state's first out transgender official

Source: CBS 11 News/YouTube

Say hello to the first out transgender public official in Texas, Jess Herbst. 

In an open letter on the town's website, Herbst announced her transgender status to New Hope residents, the Texas Observer reported. 

"As your mayor I must tell you about something that has been with me since my earliest memories," Herbst wrote. "I am transgender. Two years ago, with the support of my wife, daughters and son-in-law,  I began hormone replacement therapy. At the time, I did not imagine I would hold the mayor's position, but here I am." 

She added, "I live my life as a female now, and I will be performing my duties to the town as such." Herbst said she is not "especially sensitive" to the pronoun she's called and expects people will need time to make the change. 

According to Herbst's Facebook page, her ascendance to New Hope's mayorship was not through an election. She became mayor after the previous mayor suffered a heart attack. As the longest serving alderman on the council, the council appointed her to be New Hope's mayor in May 2016. 

This isn't Herbst's first time coming out. 

"Until this summer I was at best a part time person," she wrote in a personal blog post in November. "I kept my male persona for work, local politics, most day to day business and shopping. I if had to guess I would say my time was 70% male, 30% female."

It wasn't until her coming out letter that media outlets began to pick up the story. Herbst told LGBTQ Nation that her first town council meeting after coming out was "wonderful."

"Everyone was supportive," she said. 

According to Herbst, she will not change her name legally until the next election due to "complications with the election code." 

According to a CBS 11 broadcast, there hasn't been any uproar or calls for her removal since her coming out. 

Herbst did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Source: YouTube

How much do you trust the information in this article?

Mathew Rodriguez

Mathew Rodriguez is a Staff Writer at Mic. He is a queer Latino New Yorker who enjoys female rappers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Flannery O'Connor. He is a former editor at TheBody.com and he is working on a memoir.

MORE FROM

GOP Senator defends hijab-wearing opponent from anti-Muslim abuse

Police are now escorting the Muslim Senate candidate to public events in response to the online abuse and hate mail.

Cults have a long history of exploiting black women

Black women have been exploited by cultic relationships for years. But this fact is often overlooked.

Anti-Muslim hate crimes spiked 91% within first half of 2017, new report says

2017 is on track to become one of the worst years for anti-Muslim hate crimes, according to a new report.

Prosecutor decides not to try Ray Tensing for third time in Sam DuBose's death

Twice already, jurors have not been able to agree whether Ray Tensing was guilty of murdering Sam DuBose.

It’s 2017 and companies are still describing products as “n*gger-brown”

Walmart's website was selling a third-party product with the descriptor, and people were outraged.

Even where marijuana is decriminalized, police continue to target minorities for arrests

What if prosecutors just started throwing out these cases en masse?

GOP Senator defends hijab-wearing opponent from anti-Muslim abuse

Police are now escorting the Muslim Senate candidate to public events in response to the online abuse and hate mail.

Cults have a long history of exploiting black women

Black women have been exploited by cultic relationships for years. But this fact is often overlooked.

Anti-Muslim hate crimes spiked 91% within first half of 2017, new report says

2017 is on track to become one of the worst years for anti-Muslim hate crimes, according to a new report.

Prosecutor decides not to try Ray Tensing for third time in Sam DuBose's death

Twice already, jurors have not been able to agree whether Ray Tensing was guilty of murdering Sam DuBose.

It’s 2017 and companies are still describing products as “n*gger-brown”

Walmart's website was selling a third-party product with the descriptor, and people were outraged.

Even where marijuana is decriminalized, police continue to target minorities for arrests

What if prosecutors just started throwing out these cases en masse?