Aya Kamikawa

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Aya Kamikawa
Kamikawa in 2007
Native name 上川 あや
Born (1968-01-25) January 25, 1968 (age 50)
Tokyo, Japan
Nationality Japanese
Occupation Politician

Aya Kamikawa (上川 あや, Kamikawa Aya, born January 25, 1968)[1]) is a Tokyo municipal official, the first openly transgender person to seek or win elected office in Japan. She was elected in April 2003.[2] Kamikawa, then a 35-year-old writer, submitted her election application papers with a blank space for "sex".[3]

She won a four-year term as an independent under huge media attention, placing sixth of 72 candidates running for 52 seats in the Setagaya ward assembly, the most populous district in Tokyo.[2] Despite an announcement that the government would continue to consider her male officially, she stated that she would work as a woman. Her platform was to improve rights for women, children, the elderly, the handicapped, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people.

In April 2007, she was re-elected to her second term, placing second of 71 candidates running for 52 in the same ward assembly. She was the only openly transgender official in Japan until the 2017 election of Tomoya Hosoda.[4]

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