Pennsylvania Elects First Openly Gay Legislator

By: Michael Matson

Brian Sims, the former executive director of Equality Pennsylvania, is set to become his state’s first openly gay legislator.

Sims claimed victory Tuesday over longtime Democratic incumbent Babette Josephs in a primary race for Pennsylvania’s District 182, which covers Philadelphia’s Center City and South Philadelphia neighborhoods. The 33-year-old attorney and civil rights activist will face no major Republican opposition in the November election.

“We are the second largest state to never elect an openly gay legislator, “ Sims said at an election night event. “I’m excited to get to work.”

Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Victory Fund, which endorsed Sims, said, “Tonight we’re celebrating a historic victory for Pennsylvania and for Brian. LGBT Pennsylvanians will finally have a voice in their state legislature, and what a strong and unyielding voice it will be.  We are thrilled for Brian, who ran a remarkable campaign.”

Sims, who was co-captain of the Bloomberg University football team, is also an Advocate magazine 40 under 40 honoree this year. Read more about that honor here.

Photo: The Advocate