Playboy Names First Transgender Playmate

October 20, 2017, 1:27 PM UTC

For the first time in its 64 year history, Playboy will feature a transgender woman as its centerfold.

Ines Rau, who has posed nude for the magazine once before, will break down the barrier in the upcoming November issue. This will be the first issue of the magazine since founder Hugh Hefner died in September.

Rua has been a runway model for some time and has appeared in Vogue Italia. She also recently signed a book deal and has aspirations of becoming an actress (with a focus on action movies).

“I always knew from within, when I was a little kid in my room in the ghetto, that a beautiful destiny was waiting for me,” she says in an interview with Playboy. “I don’t know how to explain it. A little voice was telling me, ‘You’ll see. Patience.’ ”

Reaction to Rua being named as Playmate, one of Playboy’s highest honors, has, predictably, been split.

Some (including Playboy) see it as a way to break down barriers about gender identity.

Others, including some former porn stars, feel the fact that Rua was formerly a man should prevent her from the role.

Playboy, though, notes that it has experienced this sort of subscriber backlash before, specifically when Jennifer Jackson was named the first black playmate in 1965.

Rau first posed for the magazine in 2014, when she came out as transgender. Playboy first featured a transgender woman in its pages in 1981, when Bond girl Caroline “Tula” Cossey posed nude.