Sean Murphy

Mayor of Telluride

Sean was the first openly gay Mayor of Telluride


Sean is a life-long progressive with a deep commitment to improving the lives of others. Sean’s parents were second and third generation immigrants who were among the first in their families to earn a college degree. Before the age of 16, Sean had lived in five states in the Midwest and Southeast, giving him a first-hand understanding of diverse cultures and the rural-urban divide. Sean won a full scholarship to attend any college in the Carolinas, leading him to Davidson College and later to Duke University School of Law. Sean began his professional life in public service, working for the German Federal Trust Agency, mediating conflicting property restitution claims in the wake of German reunification. Sean subsequently practiced tax law for 16 years in New York, specializing in mergers and acquisitions while offering pro bono legal services to various community organizations. Following his entrepreneurial interests, Sean moved to Telluride in 2012 to open a wine bar and art gallery business. After serving as an appointed member of the Telluride Town Council for nine months during 2015, Sean was elected Mayor of Telluride in November 2015. Under Sean’s leadership during the past four years, the Town of Telluride has planned and constructed affordable housing for almost 200 individuals, almost 10% of the Town’s year-round population. Sean is running for re-election in November 2019, committed to building more affordable housing and improving internet access for all.

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