OAKLAND -- Alameda County has become home to the first transgender trial judge in the country as Victoria Kolakowski won the race to fill an empty seat on the county's Superior Court bench.
With 100 percent of precincts reporting results, Kolakowski held 50.2 percent of the vote against Deputy District Attorney John Creighton, who had 48.7 percent.
The race gave voters a distinct choice between a candidate with unquestionable experience and one who would have brought a new level of diversity to a bench populated by prosecutors and men.
Creighton was the candidate with experience with more than 25 years arguing cases in front of juries as a county prosecutor.
Kolakowski was the candidate hoping to bring diversity to the bench through her experience being transgender and her background as an attorney focusing on civil matters through her job as an administrative law judge at the California Public Utilities Commission.
Kolakowski won a primary in June and campaigned on a platform of being the first transgender judge in the state and bringing change to a bench that, she argued, was too overloaded with white males.
Creighton campaigned on a platform of experience as he argued that his time in the Alameda County District Attorney's office gave him the experience a judge requires to make sound rulings from the bench during a trial. He also had the backing of more than 80 percent of judges in the county court system.