Army veteran could become Nevada’s first openly trans lawmaker
LaDon Henry
LaDon Henry

Army veteran LaDon Henry could become Nevada’s first openly transgender legislator.

A trans man, Henry served for nearly four years while closeted. This is his first bid for political office.

“I know the type of discrimination that happens on a day-to-day basis that has been swept under the rug for far too long,” he told KTNV.

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Henry, 41, is currently “a small-business owner and radio host.”

Henry is running for the assembly in District 42 (Spring Valley). He will be up against fellow Democrats Alexander Assefa and Kathleen Lauckner in the June 12 primary.

The Review-Journal wrote that Henry’s platform promises include focusing on “improving Nevada’s education system, diversifying the economy and fighting for underrepresented communities, including immigrants, at-risk youth and ex-prisoners.”

“It wasn’t just me being transgender that made me want to run,” said Henry. “There are so many different marginalized communities right now who feel like they’re not citizens.”

Henry is running to fill Democrat Irene Bustamante Adams’ vacated seat (Adams chose not to seek re-election). The district has twice as many registered Democrats than Republicans, meaning if Henry gets the Democratic nomination he’ll be well positioned to win the seat.

“I think it’s so important to be able to see yourself in the people who represent you,” Briana Escamilla, Nevada director of the Human Rights Campaign, told the Review-Journal.

“It could be a lifesaving message to a transgender kid who is struggling and afraid to come out. Being able to see themselves in the Legislature could be lifesaving for them.”