In a decision that has already been widely hailed, President Obama appointed the first openly transgender staff member to serve in the White House on Tuesday.
Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, who has tirelessly advocated for transgender individuals, will serve as an outreach and recruitment director in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel.
National Center for Transgender Equality Executive Director Mara Keisling released the following statement regarding President Obama’s appointment:
“I am elated that Raffi Freedman-Gurspan will become the first openly transgender staff member at the White House. President Obama has long said he wants his Administration to look like the American people. I have understood this to include transgender Americans. A transgender person was inevitably going to work in the White House. That the first transgender appointee is a transgender woman of color is itself significant. And that the first White House transgender appointee is of a friend is inspiring to me and to countless others who have been touched by Raffi’s advocacy.”
Congratulations, Raffi, and well done, President Obama!