Biden Nominates Trans Physician Rachel Levine As Assistant Health Secretary

President-elect Joe Biden is already making history as he's nominated Pennsylvania Health Secretary Rachel Levine to be his assistant secretary of health, a move that would make her the first openly transgender federal official to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Per Time, Levine is a pediatrician and former Pennsylvania physician general, who was appointed to her current position by Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf in 2017. As a graduate of Harvard and of Tulane Medical School, she currently is a professor at the Penn State College of Medicine and president of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials. Additionally, she has a history of writing on topics like the opioid crisis, medical marijuana, adolescent medicine, as well as LGBTQ medicine.

"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,” Biden said in a statement. “She is a historic and deeply qualified choice to help lead our administration’s health efforts."

Meanwhile, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris referred to Levine as "a remarkable public servant with the knowledge and experience to help us contain this pandemic, and protect and improve the health and well-being of the American people."

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