In 1970 he consulted a psychiatrist was told told that quitting was like quitting smoking. So he purged his female wardrobe, and Bob and Mae were married. Bob became a city councilor in St Paul, Minnesota, and then president of the council. Later he worked in investment banking.
In 1977 he told a female therapist that he wanted to be a girl, and she said: "Well, then, why don't you get on with it?" Susan started going out as female, and in January 1980 she committed to the gender change. Bob and Mae divorced in 1981. On 1 January 1983, Susan and Mae held a ceremony for invited friends including the mayor, to "commemorate the departure of Bob Sylvester and arrival of Susan Kimberly". Transition was completed in 1984 courtesy of Dr Biber.
After a few years of unemployment, she was back in City Hall working for the mayor. She ran unsuccessfully for City Council and County Board. In 1998 Susan was appointed deputy mayor of St Paul under Norm Coleman, they both having switched their allegiance to the Republican Party.
"I lost more friends becoming a Republican than I did becoming a woman".She also worked for Coleman when he was elected as a US Senator after Democratic incumbent Paul Wellstone, the most prominent senator to vote against congressional authorization for US invasion of Iraq, died in a plane crash (perhaps assassination) eleven days before the election.
Later Susan was vice president of economic development for the St Paul Chamber of Commerce. In 2007 she flew to Florida to speak on behalf of Susan Stanton who was being fired from her job as city manager after announcing a coming transition.
She retired in 2010.
- "Bob Sylvester finds peace as Susan Kimberly". Park City Daily News, May 3, 1983. http://tinyurl.com/o9tpqo3.
- Leyla Kokmem. “Body vs. Soul.” Minneapolis/St Paul City Pages, July 17, 2002. www.citypages.com/databank/23/1128/article10563.asp?page=1.
- Hastings Wyman "Transgender and Bisexual Issues in Public Administration and Policy" in Wallace Swan (ed). Handbook of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Administration and Policy. CRC Press, 2004: 126-7.
- Jeff Severns Guntzel. "Coleman, Paulose and Susan Kimberly". Minneapolis/St Paul City Pages, Dec 6 2007. http://blogs.citypages.com/blotter/2007/12/he_did_what.php.
- Joe Kimball. "Economic development expert Kimberly joining chamber full time" MinnPost, 01/11/08. http://www.minnpost.com/politics-policy/2008/01/economic-development-expert-kimberly-joining-chamber-full-time.
- Wyman Spano & Nona Yates. A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Senate: Franken vs. Coleman and the decline of civilized politics. Grand Rapids, Mich: Zenith, 2010: 61, 96, 104
- Chris Havens. "Susan Kimberly's new transition". St Paul Star Tribune, July 30, 2010. www.startribune.com/local/stpaul/99671469.html.