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Kim Coco Iwamoto

Kim Coco Iwamoto made history in 2006 as the highest-ranking openly-transgender elected official in the U.S., after winning a seat on the Hawai‘i State Board of Education. After two terms, she was appointed to and served two terms on the Hawai’i Civil Rights Commission. Iwamoto had initially envisioned a career in fashion, but after being fired from a job in New York for being transgender, she enrolled in law school. As a public interest attorney, she worked tirelessly to expand civil rights laws. As a politician, she has been credited with giving the transgeder community a foothold in political representation and sent a message that LGBTQ+ people have a place everywhere – including the halls of power.

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