Jane Castor Moves Forward in Election for Tampa Mayor; Would Become First LGBTQ Big City Mayor in Southeast

Castor’s first place finish secures her spot in the April 23 runoff

Washington, DC – Tampa mayoral candidate Jane Castor received more votes than any of her six challengers Tuesday night, securing her a spot in the April 23 runoff against David Straz, who voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election. If she wins the runoff, Jane will become the first openly LGBTQ person elected mayor of a major American city in the Southeast. With 100 of 103 precincts reporting, Castor currently stands at 48.13 percent of the vote – a strong lead for a crowded race but just short of the 50 percent necessary to avoid a runoff. Castor received Victory Fund’s Spotlight endorsement in January, the organizations’ highest endorsement level, which comes with additional fundraising support and resources.

Former Houston Mayor Annise Parker – now President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund and the highest-ranking openly LGBTQ mayor in U.S. history – released the following statement about Castor’s victory:

“A lavender ceiling was shattered in Florida Tuesday night, with voters overwhelmingly sending Jane Castor to the runoff and putting her on-track to become the first openly LGBTQ big city mayor in the Southeastern United States,” said Victory Fund President & CEO Mayor Annise Parker. “For Jane to outperform her opponents in such a crowded field demonstrates the value voters place in her public service: running a large agency, working with diverse communities on tough issues, and ensuring constituent priorities are her priorities. It is also her experiences and perspectives as a woman and a lesbian that appeal to voters – which is why lesbian mayoral candidates are doing well in Chicago, Kansas City and Madison, Wisconsin as well. LGBTQ elected officials are empathetic, principled and values-driven leaders, and our nation’s electorate is hungry for that leadership right now.”

Also in Tampa, Victory Fund endorsed city council candidates Alan Clendenin and Ella Coffee advanced in their historic races. With runoff wins in April, Clendenin will be the first openly LGBTQ man elected to the council and Coffee will become the first openly LGBTQ woman elected to it.



LGBTQ Victory Fund

LGBTQ Victory Fund works to change the face and voice of America’s politics and achieve equality for LGBTQ Americans by increasing the number of openly LGBTQ elected officials at all levels of government.