The Deets on Stu Rasmussen’s Climb to Mayor


Details profiles Silverton, Oregon's transgender mayor Stu Rasmussen, who might be getting a reality show.

Writer Kayleen Schaefer was there the night Stu was sworn in:  "Longtime mayor Ken Hector, who lost his bid for re-election by 519
votes, stands quietly next to the man who beat him. He's dressed in a
red sweater vest. To honor Hector's 16 years of service, Rasmussen
presents him with a crystal clock. "Now you'll have plenty of time on
your hands," he says. Rasmussen then places his left hand on a Bible,
raises his right hand in the air, and pledges 'to uphold the
Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of Oregon, and
faithfully perform my duties as mayor.' After some handshakes, he takes
a seat on the dais, puts on a pair of reading glasses, and props his
chin atop the crimson-tipped fingers he once used to rebuild a Chevy
Suburban engine. He leans forward and, in the voice of a man
introducing a burlesque act, says, "You're probably wondering why I've
asked you here."

(image lisa kereszi for Details)


  1. K says

    Between using “deets” in this post and using “the bomb” in the last Lady Gaga post, you are totally cracking me up lately. Love it.

  2. pickles says

    Thanks so much for keeping the spotlight on Rassmussen. She’s a real inspiration. Stu ROCKS!

  3. Mike in the Tundra says

    I do have a big problem with Schaefer using the male pronoun in the article. If nothing else, it was just damn impolite.

  4. K says

    Mike, the November CNN piece and LA Times profile both refer to Stu as “he.” He refers to himself as a crossdresser and a transvestite, which, unfortunately, isn’t very helpful. But nonetheless, that’s his choice of words.

  5. Mike in the Tundra says

    Thanks for the info. I was thinking of him as a transsexual. The transsexuals that I know would refer to themselves as the sex they see themselves. I guess a crossdresser and transvestite would use a different nomenclature.

  6. BobGolfs says

    One thing about Stu, he isn’t going to follow preset rules.

    He also refers to himself like this: “I am a dude,” he said. “I am a heterosexual male who appears to be a female.”

    But really, focusing on he or she isn’t the point. Stu sets the bar so high, there isn’t going to be one neat little category or label. Stu is just….Stu.

  7. pacnwjay says

    Well put, Bobgolfs. Having grown up near Silverton and gone to high school there, I’ve known Stu (albeit not well) most of my life. He’s a unique fellow. He’s smart. He is a good businessman.

    My (almost 70 yo) Dad has rolled with these changes simply because he genuinely likes and respects Stu. I think that sums up most of the people who live in Silverton.

    I do worry a bit that a tv show might not go over so well… we are talking about small-town America.