Carbondale City Council swears in state’s first trans council member

Clare Killman was elected during last month’s municipal elections.
Carbondale City Council Member Clare Killman is sworn in to office on Tuesday, May 9. Photo courtesy of Clare Killman

CARBONDALE – Clare Killman was sworn into office as the state’s first out transgender city council member on Tuesday, May 10.

She is also the southernmost trans officeholder in the state. Killman won her at-large seat during the April municipal election.

“I’m very excited to be in position of extending our hospitality to not only the people who live here, but also to those seeking to come here to build a better life,” she said. “And truly, being placed on that council has been the highest honor of my life thus far. So, thank you to everyone who supported me.”

Killman’s swearing in is the latest sign of the college town in far Southern Illinois is a sanctuary for LGBTQ people in the area and in nearby states.

“Killman’s inauguration is impactful for Carbondale, which has become a significant community of safety and refuge in Southern Illinois for folks seeking access to reproductive healthcare and gender-affirming healthcare that is otherwise limited, prohibited, or criminalized in their home states,” said Myles Brady Davis, communications director for Equality Illinois.

Killman is one of five out trans officeholders in the state. Except for Killman and Alana Banks on the Decatur School Board, all are in the Chicago area.

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