James Duke Mason
|West Hollywood Lesbian & Gay Advisory Board Member|
October 8, 2015
|Appointed by||John Heilman|
April 27, 1992 |
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Alma mater||California Lutheran University|
James Duke Mason (born April 27, 1992) is an American writer, activist and politician. He is a city official in West Hollywood, California, serving on the Lesbian & Gay Advisory Board since 2015. In 2010, The Advocate listed Mason as one of the most influential young LGBT Americans in their "Forty Under 40" issue. He was named in OUT Magazine's 2011 "Out 100" issue as one of the 100 most influential LGBT people in the world.
Mason is the only child of pop rock singer Belinda Carlisle and former White House aide Morgan Mason, and the only grandchild of the late actor James Mason. Born in Los Angeles, he moved to France with his parents as a child. In an Attitude Magazine interview, Mason stated that he is openly gay and that he came out to his family and friends at the age of 14 in 2006. After graduating from Mougins School, an international school in the south of France in July 2010, Mason moved back to the U.S. to study political science at California Lutheran University. After a year he moved to West Hollywood, California to focus on grassroots advocacy.
Mason was appointed to serve as a page in the U.S. House of Representatives during the summer of 2008, and also worked as a volunteer for Hillary Clinton during the 2008 Democratic primaries. He has appeared on TV shows such as Dr. Phil, Nancy Grace, and Politicking with Larry King to discuss LGBT issues, has written articles for websites such as The Huffington Post, The Hollywood Reporter, OUT and The Advocate, and did a YouTube video to support the It Gets Better campaign. He served as an official surrogate for the campaigns of Barack Obama in the 2012 U.S. Presidential Election and Hillary Clinton in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election. He had a small role in the film What Happens Next, which screened as part of the Hollywood Film Festival. He served on the board of directors of Outfest from January 2012 to January 2015, making him the youngest board member in the organization's 30-year history. Since 2014 he has been one of the leading advocates on behalf of the boycott of the Beverly Hills Hotel, working closely with longtime LGBT activist and former Harvey Milk aide Cleve Jones.
He was a candidate for the West Hollywood City Council in the March 3, 2015 election, and was subsequently appointed by Mayor Lindsey Horvath to her newly created 21st Century Leaders Task Force. In May 2015 he was selected to serve as special guest grand marshal of the Sacramento Pride Parade. In June 2015 he was unanimously appointed to the board of directors of the West Hollywood Community Housing Corporation. In October 2015 he was appointed by Councilmember John Heilman to the West Hollywood Lesbian & Gay Advisory Board.
- Contributors, Advocate (April 7, 2010). "Forty Under 40". Advocate.com. Retrieved 2013-05-29.
- "17th Annual Out100 | Out Magazine". Out.com. Retrieved 2013-05-29.
- Melloy, Kilian (September 24, 2009). "James Duke Mason interview with Edge Publications". Edgesanfrancisco.com. Retrieved 2013-05-29.
- "James Duke Mason and Belinda Carlisle in Attitude Magazine". Perezhilton.com. December 16, 2009. Retrieved 2013-05-29.