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Joe Biden Picks Dr. Rachel Levine, Set to Make U.S. Trans History

Dr. Rachel Levine portrait.

Levine is being nominated to serve in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Joe Biden has been making diversity a hallmark of his administration, even before his first day in office. His slate of nominations and announcements will likely see him with the most amount of "firsts" in modern history. Alongside Kamala Harris, others like Adewale Adeyemo, Xavier Beccera, Carlos Elizondo, Pete Buttigieg, Deb Haaland, and more. Now, Dr. Rachel Levine is set to join this list.

Currently serving as the Secretary of Health for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Levine is being nominated as Assistant Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In her current post since July 2017, Levine has made headline news for her handling of the ongoing global pandemic. If she were to be confirmed by the Senate, she would become the first trans person ever confirmed by the Senate for a government role.

"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."

Levine served as one of the public faces of Pennsylvania's response to the ongoing crisis but was a respected figure long before. She was confirmed as Pennsylvania's physician general in 2015 by a Republican-controlled senate. That Senate went on to confirm her twice more over the years. She graduated from Harvard College and the Tulane University School of Medicine.

She joins Becerra, who is Biden's Health and Human Services secretary nominee. Both are expected to be confirmed by the Senate, where Democrats have a simple majority.

RELATED | Here's All of the Biden Administration LGBTQ+ Staffers We Know (So Far)

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