United States Assistant Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine made history again on Oct. 19 as she became the first openly transgender four-star officer in any of the eight uniformed services in the country.
During the ceremony, Levine was sworn in as an admiral — the highest- ranking official of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, the organization service tasked with responding to medical issues and health crises like the COVID-19 pandemic.
Levine’s appointment also made her the organization’s first female four-star admiral.
“This is a momentous occasion, and I am honored to take this role for the impact I can make and for the historic nature of what it symbolizes,” Levine said in a speech.
“I stand on the shoulders of those LGBTQ+ individuals who came before me, both those known and unknown. May this appointment today be the first of many more to come, as we create a diverse and more inclusive future,” Levine further said.
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra described Levine’s appointment “a giant step forward towards equality as a nation and a proud moment for HHS.”
Levine, 63, first made history last March when she became the first openly transgender federal official to be confirmed by the Senate.
© Fourth Estate® — All Rights Reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.