US Incoming President, Joe Biden has made history by picking a transgender doctor for a top government health post in his administration.
Rachel Levine, 64, is set to serve as assistant secretary of health if her appointment is confirmed by the US Senate, and will become the first transgender official ever confirmed by senators.
Announcing plans for Levine’s appointment, Biden admitted she is a ‘historic’ pick, but added that the medic was a ‘deeply qualified choice to help lead our administration’s health efforts.’
He added: ‘Dr. Rachel Levine will bring the steady leadership and essential expertise we need to get people through this pandemic — no matter their zip code, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability — and meet the public health needs of our country in this critical moment and beyond.’
A graduate of Harvard and of Tulane Medical School, Levine is president of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials. She spent the last year as the public face of Pennsylvania’s Covid-19 response.
Previously, she spearheaded an adolescent health clinic at Penn State before she was appointed as physician general by the state’s governor, Tom Wolf, and then unanimously confirmed as secretary of health in 2017.