Brian Knudsen and family

LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Three new Las Vegas City Council members will be sworn in next month, including its first openly gay man. 

Brian Knudsen said being gay is just part of who he is, but he made sure voters knew that part of him. 

"The first thing that we did was send out a holiday card in December of 2018 with a picture of me and my husband and our two adopted children. I wanted the world to know who I am," said Knudsen. 

Las Vegas voters know who Knudsen is -- a small business owner, husband and father.

"Being gay is one part of my life but I'm also educated, I'm experienced and I've had a lot of roles in our community, leadership roles where I've been able to bring people together."

Knudsen worked for the city for nine years and was the president of the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Nevada. As councilman of Ward 1, he said he has other plans. 

"I need to build relationships with the city staff and other council members," he said. 

Knudsen said he wants to improve the ban on short-term rentals, like Airbnb. 

"I don't think a ban can be effective so I think it requires understanding what the technology companies need, establishing stricter regulations and then I do think there's going to be an opportunity for conversations around taxing or licensing," Knudsen explained. 

He said he also wants to reduce petty crime in Ward 1 and get more community members to use and create more public transportation, including a light-rail system connecting Maryland Parkway to the medical district. 

Above all, Knudsen said his first priority is the medical district. 

Last year, his son came down with a serious lung infection and spent more than a month in the ICU at University Medical Center. 

"What I saw was really dedicated staff, really wonderful, wonderful nurses, really experienced physicians but there was a lack of specialists ... I think that's been the experience of many people in our community. For the very best healthcare you need to go to McCarran airport," said Knudsen. 

Better healthcare also means a new Children's Hospital for his kids Andrew and Kate and other kids across the community. 

He said his family was part of his campaign. 

"For every one negative comment, I would get 50 positive comments saying they're glad I'm running, they're glad my family is putting themselves out there." 

They will be part of his term as her serves the city. 

"Hopefully in my experience I'll be able to give hope or opportunity where it exists and let people know its okay to talk about who you are, it's okay to be who you are, it's okay to advocate and fight for other people who are like you," Knudsen said.

Victoria Seaman and Olivia Diaz will also join City Council this year. 

Copyright 2019 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved

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(4) comments

Nevermore

I could care less what your sexual orientation is. I just don't want it thrown in my face everyday. It doesn't make you anymore special than anybody else.

Snowflaker

Just because you kissed that boy at summer camp, and something funny happened in your shorts, don't be angry. Embrace it sweetheart 😘

Hawks15

just another loser that couldn't make it with women

Snowflaker

I sense some latent homosexual tendencies... It's ok little fella 😘

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