Intersex Official Elected In Alaska

Kathy Ottersien

 Kathy Ottersten made history in October when she was elected to the Fairbanks City Council.

Ottersten, 52, was transitioning in her 20s when she discovered she was intersex. The doctors had performed genital surgery, telling her parents they had to remove extra skin. Ottersten’s parents had no idea she was intersex.

Alaska, a conservative state, also elected a trans woman, but the local media barely picked up either occurrence. Ottersten told Into it’s because women in Alaska don’t generally try to present feminine.

“You’re too busy hauling your own water because you live in a dry cabin or out dealing with the mushing dogs,” Ottersten said.

Ottersten also said in her conservative city, she didn’t see much discrimination.

“I’m just immensely proud of this community because overall the people stuck to the issues, but even at the outset, I didn’t feel it was going to be a problem,” Ottersten said.

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