Anne Rudin, the first woman to be elected mayor of Sacramento, died on Thanksgiving of complications of pneumonia, according to her family.
She was 97. Rudin served as the president of both the League of Women Voters of Sacramento and the League of Women Voters of California. She went on to become a member of the Sacramento City Council for 12 years. Afterward, she was elected as the 51st mayor of Sacramento and served the city from 1983 to 1992. "She's someone who broke the glass ceiling, here in Sacramento, as not only the first woman to be elected from a district, back in '71, but the first woman to be elected citywide as mayor," said former mayor Heather Fargo.
Rudin said in a message provided to KCRA 3 by her son Jay Rudin to be made public after her death that she "did not hesitate to tackle issues that were controversial." She listed several examples with self-analysis on the results.
Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg in a statement on Saturday called Rudin "decent" and "tough."
"Mayor Anne Rudin was always a leader ahead of her time," Steinberg said. "She was among the first to recognize that LGBTQ rights are core civil rights. She saw early the possibilities to convert military bases into economic opportunities. She broke the glass ceiling becoming Sacramento’s first elected woman Mayor. She was decent, tough, and always elevated the best of Sacramento’s values."