By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — If elected, one of the candidates for judge for the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas would become a first for the LGBTQ community, and says win or lose he’s hoping to send a message.

“Because of my experience, I can hit the ground running and contribute right away,” says Henry Sias.

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At 40 years old, the Detroit native is a graduate of Yale Law School. He spent time clerking for two state Supreme Court judges and two Philadelphia judges, as well. But if Sias, who snagged the number six position on the primary ballot were to win, he’d grab headlines not for his prior work- but because he’d break LGBTQ barriers.

“If elected I’d be our first transgender judge and the third transgender judge in the nation,” he says.

He’d also become the first transgender man in the nation to take the bench and he believes the win would give the trans community hope.

“We have rates of joblessness that are like three times the national average,” says Sias, “it would send an extremely powerful message to transgender Philadelphians.”

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Sias is one of the founders of the Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity, a legal non-profit known for its expungement clinics and aid to underserved communities.

Sias has been endorsement by the Liberty City Democrats. For more on Sias, visit his Facebook page.

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