Atlanta City Councilmember Matt Westmoreland came out as gay just before being sworn in for his second term in office.
Westmoreland, who holds the Post 2 at-large seat on the Council, posted the announcement in a Twitter thread on Sunday night (January 2).
“Tomorrow afternoon, I’ll swear an oath for the third time to serve the City of Atlanta and all her residents,” he said. “And I’ll do it as a proud member of our LGBTQ+ community.”
“I wrestled with the decision to post this note: The fact that the content is so personal. The desire to live in a world where such pronouncements aren’t necessary. The fear that who I choose to be with would change how people view me or my public service,” the thread continues. “But the former teacher and school board member in me has been thinking about our students who have ever struggled to accept themselves for who they are. And, frankly, has found inspiration in our students who allow their authentic selves to shine brightly for all to see.”
“In the end, I wanted I wanted to be true to myself – and to you… For the last eight years, I’ve worked hard each and every day to help build an equitable, inclusive, and diverse Atlanta for all who call this incredible city home. I am excited to recommit myself to that fight tomorrow,” the post concluded. “And I’m proud that I will do it as I also fully embrace who I truly am.”
While the thread did not clarify, Westmoreland told SaportaReport that he is gay. With his coming out, there are now four openly LGBTQ members of the Atlanta City Council: him, Liliana Bakhtiari, Alex Wan, and Keisha Sen Waites.
Before first winning the council seat in 2017, Westmoreland served a term on the Atlanta Baord of Education. He was reelected to the City Council back in November with 65 percent of the vote.