November 27, 1999 01:20pm
Transsexual Mayor Wins in N. Zealand
by: RAY LILLEY
Georgina Beyer, 42, was elected under the country's complex proportional representation system under which parties hand out the seats they've won in elections. She also looked likely to capture the Wairarapa electorate 40 miles north of Wellington.
"It's looking like we are there, but whatever comes we have done an extraordinarily good job," she told cheering supporters in the small rural town of Carterton, where she is mayor.
Beyer, born George Bertrand in 1957, was more than 2000 votes ahead of her National opponent.
Beyer, who is part Maori, will be one of a group of 18 Maori legislators in the 120-member Parliament, the largest representation by Maori this century. Six of the group were elected to Maori seats, specially set up last century to give Maori, New Zealand's first inhabitants, a voice in the ruling Parliament.
In her recently-published biography, Beyer described her life as a stripper and male prostitute in Wellington and Sydney before she underwent a full sex change operation.
Since then she has worked as an actor, publicist and mayor.