South Dakota Elects Its First Out Gay Man to State Legislature
South Dakota is one of four states in the US with no out LGBTQ members of the state legislature. At least it was, until this week.
On November 8, 2022, Kameron Nelson was elected to the state house of representatives to represent House District 10. He is the first out LGBTQ man to be elected to South Dakota’s legislature.
District 10 encompasses parts of northeastern Sioux Falls and the Brandon area in Minnehanna County.
Along with Nelson, incumbent Erin Healy was reelected to also represent District 10 in the next legislative session.
Of the 14,217 ballots cast in this race, Healy got 4,613 votes or 32.45%. Nelson finished with 3,510 or 24.69%. Challengers Tom Sutton and John Mogen received 2,980 and 3,114 votes respectively.
See full South Dakota Election Results HERE
"Thank you, District 10! I am grateful for your support, love and encouragement as we campaigned over the past 11 months," Nelson wrote on Facebook Wednesday, "I met so many wonderful people who are eager to make SD better. Thank you for trusting me to represent you in Pierre."
Nelson is a South Dakota native and SDSU grad who works for the LifeScape Foundation in Sioux Falls.
"We must never let our differences detract from what truly binds us; our humanity. Together, we will achieve greatness." - Kameron Nelson
This was the first election in the history of the United States where LGBTQ candidates were on the ballot in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, according to the advocacy group Victory Fund.