Ron Oden has a long history of community activism and political service in Palm Springs. In 1995, he won election as a City Council member. In November 2003, he was elected Mayor of Palm Springs, becoming the first Black out LGBTQ+ person elected mayor of any U.S. city. Ron championed embracing Palm Springs’ past and its diverse LGBTQ+ community and, as Mayor, focused on expanding diversity while leading the city’s first LGBTQ+ majority on the City Council. Under his leadership, the city turned into a top tourist destination and experienced unprecedented growth.
Mayor of Palm Springs, California (2003 – 2007)