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Jonathan Estrada Makes History as Pasadena’s First Out City Council Member

The openly gay Hispanic man won his District E runoff on June 15.

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Jonathan Estrada

Jonathan Estrada, a 28-year-old gay Hispanic public servant, has just made history as the first out LGBTQ person elected to the Pasadena City Council. 

According to unofficial election results, Estrada won an election for the city’s District E seat, defeating Joseph “JT” Thomas. Estrada garnered 510 votes (57 percent), while Thomas received 384 in the June 15 election. 

The election fills the seat of incumbent Cody Ray Wheeler, who was unable to seek re-election due to term limits. 

“I am incredibly honored to serve as the next City Council Member for District E on the Pasadena City Council,” Estrada wrote on Facebook. “Thank you to everyone who knocked on doors for us, to everyone who donated to our campaign, to everyone who worked the polls with us, and everyone who supported us along the way. I look forward to working with the community to serve and represent the residents of District E.” 

In the May 1 general election, Estrada and Thomas came ranked first and second respectively among five candidates. The race was too close to call and resulted in a runoff.

Estrada grew up in Pasadena and attended Sparks Elementary, San Jacinto Intermediate, and Sam Rayburn High School. With his sights set on public service, he enrolled in the political science and government program at the University of Houston-Downtown. He is currently participating in a UH-Clear Lake initiative that prepares students for local, state, and federal public service.

For more information on Jonathan Estrada, visit


Lourdes Zavaleta

Lourdes Zavaleta is the managing editor of OutSmart magazine.
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