||Mayor of Seattle
Main article: 2017 Seattle mayoral election
Durkan announced her candidacy for Seattle mayor on May 11, 2017, shortly after incumbent Mayor Ed Murray ended his re-election campaign. She was labeled as an "establishment" candidate, among a crowded field in the primary race, and picked up endorsements from Murray and members of the Seattle City Council, as well as The Seattle Times and Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
In the August primary election, Durkan placed first with 27.9 percent of votes, advancing to the general election with urban planner Cary Moon, who earned 17.6 percent.
Durkan broke the record for most donors and most money raised in the history of Seattle Mayoral campaigns, out-earning Cary Moon 5-to-1. She raised over $1 million. Mayor Murray's Political Consultant, Sandeep Kaushik, joined Durkan's campaign and would later become a senior adviser to her. Kaushik is also a lobbyist for Comcast and also continues to advise the Mayor on policy. The day after the November 7 general election, in which Durkan received over 60% of the preliminary votes, Moon conceded to Mayor-elect Durkan.
In June 2019, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, an event widely considered a watershed moment in the modern LGBTQ rights movement, Queerty named her one of the Pride50 "trailblazing individuals who actively ensure society remains moving towards equality, acceptance and dignity for all queer people".