first openly transgender person elected to office in West Virginia

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West Virginia has just elected its first openly transgender official.

Rosemary Ketchum will soon join the Wheeling City Council after defeating three challengers in an open race for the Third Ward seat in Tuesday’s municipal election.

She defeated Peggy Niebergall by 11 votes, 287 (39.1%) to 272 (37.1%). Jerome “Jake” Henry picked up 137 votes (18.6%) in the 3rd Ward seat. Incumbent Melinda Koslik did not seek reelection.

Ketchum, a 2019 graduate of Wheeling University and resident of Wheeling for more than a decade, will be one of just 27 out trans elected officials in the entire nation.

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