Portland, Oregon has elected it's first openly gay mayor – and the first to run one of the 30 largest cities in the United States. City Commissioner Sam Adams won a majority vote (59% with 97% of the votes counted) over several opponents in a mail-only primary, The Oregonian newspaper reported.

Adams, a Democrat, was endorsed in his bid by the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, a group committed to increasing the number of openly GLBT elected officials at all levels of government.

A first-term city commissioner, Adams said he was shocked by the results. In a morning press conference where he discussed his victory call from former mayor Vera Katz, under whom he served 11 years as Chief of Staff, he said, “I talked to her at about 7:30, and she's like, 'WOW 58 percent. Can you believe it?' I'm like, no I can't believe it. She's like, 'congratulations mayor elect'. And I said, that sounds so bizarre coming from you, but thank you.”

Sexual orientation appeared to be a non-issue in local media coverage.

Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund President & CEO Chuck Wolfe said, “In Oregon, fairness has won the day. [The election of Sam Adams as mayor] means that people who are openly gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender can also be seen as capable, committed leaders whose sexual orientation or gender identity is less important than what they plan to do for their communities. That's a step towards full equality we want to replicate across America.”

The Victory Fund has endorsed 60 candidates so far in 2008. Currently, over 400 openly GLBT elected officials serve in the US Government, reports The Victory Fund.

Sam Adams will remain mayor-elect until January 1, 2009.