BREAKING: First Openly Gay Man Elected To Statewide Office In Utah

Posted By on July 16, 2011

Salt Lake City, Utah – BREAKING: Moments ago, Jim Dabakis became the first openly gay man to be elected to a statewide office in Utah. He is also among the first openly gay Democratic State Party Chairs nationwide.

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Jim Dabakis, Utah's new Democratic State Party Chair

Utah has seen two openly-gay Representatives in the State House. It has also seen an openly gay State Senator. But this is the first time an openly-LGBT person has been elected to an office by voters statewide, and it comes just 3 years after Prop 8.

“It’s an honor and a thrill [to be elected Chairman of the State Democratic Party,” says Dabakis.

From the beginning of his campaign 5 months ago, Dabakis made it clear that he did not think his sexual orientation should be an issue in the race.

“I don’t see it as a relevant factor,” he says. “I am here to do a job and do it the best I can whether I’m gay, straight, black, white or purple.”

Jim is the original co-founder of both the Utah Pride Center as well as the political advocacy group Equality Utah, and has built up a large following after his negotiations with the Mormon Church ended with them endorsing Salt Lake City’s Non-Discrimination Ordinances.

Utah still has a long way to go, but this certainly shows the great leaps and bounds it has taken within the past 2 years.

*Author’s Note: It was an honor to serve as Campaign Manager for Jim Dabakis. Good luck in the new job Jim!

About The Author

Eric Ethington
Eric Ethington has been specializing in political messaging, communications strategy, and public relations for more than a decade. Originally hailing from Salt Lake City, he now works in Boston for a social justice think tank. Eric’s writing, advocacy work, and research have been featured on MSNBC, CNN, Fox News, CNBC, the New York Times, The Guardian, and The Public Eye magazine. He’s worked as a reporter, radio host, activist and electoral campaign strategist. Follow him on Twitter @EricEthington

Comments

5 Responses to “BREAKING: First Openly Gay Man Elected To Statewide Office In Utah”

  1. Rayne Van-Dunem says:

    That is a misleading title. “Statewide” usually refers only to positions in the state government, not party positions outside of government.

    So governorship, cabinet positions, membership of the legislature, elected court positions, those are statewide since they make decisions which are statewide in impact. US Senators are elected on a statewide basis.

    This isn’t a government position (wish it were, of course). Congrats to him, nonetheless.

  2. Reed Boyer says:

    “Just 3 years after Prop 8″ . . . and by golly, Californians are STILL suffering from the Mormon Proposition. Use the “large following” to do something about that, and I’ll be the first to toss some confetti in your honor.

    Until then, the BOYCOTT continues.

  3. […] via PRIDE in Utah » BREAKING: First Openly Gay Man Elected To Statewide Office In Utah. […]

  4. Jake Shannon says:

    Read more about Willie Marshall, the first openly gay man to be elected mayor of a Utah town. here:

    http://www.affirmation.org/news/utahs_gay_mayor.pdf

  5. Johnny says:

    A Gay MORMON BISHOP!!
    He is a fake and a phony………
    Being a gay Mormon bishop is like a Gay man going out on the town with a bad haircut!!
    Mormon Religion is Based on pure Lies!
    There is NO WAY IN HEAVEN OR HELL DO I BELIEVE IN A MORMON GAY BISHOP!

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