LGBT Philly history was made last night when Lou Cutler, 33, was crowned the very first transgender Mr. Gay Philadelphia. He took the crown and sash in the wee hours of the morning at a competition at Field House hosted by local party promoters Bruce Yelk and Josh Schonewolf.
After his win, I pulled Cutler aside to ask what being the first trans winner means to him.
“It means a lot to me. … It’s kind of hard to be a gay trans man sometimes. … But I’m very proud of who I am, and I’ve worked very hard to become who I am. This, in some sense, is a dream come true for me. To be able to be part of this community, and also represent my own community—and to just be visible. It’s important for me to be out and visible as gay and trans, to show the community that not every trans person is the same.”
Fourteen contestants showed up to compete for the prize, showing their stuff in a casual and swimsuit round, then answering a series of questions from judges. Besides looking dapper in both clothing rounds, Cutler stood out for his positive, fun-loving personality. He didn't blink an eye in the Q&A round when he was asked one of the sillier questions out of the bunch: "How big is [host] Brittany Lynn's penis?" (The answer? As big as you want it to be.)
Other winners of the night included Mr. 12th Street Gym, Felipe Carrillo, who won the second place prize, and Billy Cavallo, the reigning Most Original Stoli Guy, rounded out the top three. Cutler also took home the prize for Best Body, and Robert Touchton won Mr. Congeniality.
Congrats to Cutler, and all his competitors. It was a great night.