Rachel Levine was sworn Tuesday as an admiral in the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, becoming the country’s first four-star transgender officer in its uniformed services, which includes the Coast Guard and the military.
She had already made history earlier this year as the first openly transgender person confirmed to a government post by the U.S. Senate, securing approval for her appointment as Assistant Secretary of Health in Joe’s administration. Biden.
A professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at Penn State College of Medicine, Levine, 63, previously led Pennsylvania’s response to the coronavirus pandemic as the state’s top health official.
Across the world, trans politicians have gained greater prominence in recent years – with Pauline Ngarmpring become Thailand’s first trans candidate for prime minister in 2019.
Here are some other trans people who serve in high profile politics and government around the world:
– Tamara Adrian, Deputy Member of the National Assembly of Venezuela
Adrian, 67, a member of the small Popular Will party, in 2015 became the second trans woman to be elected to a national legislature in the Western Hemisphere.
A year before her election, she filed an appeal for recognition of her gender identity with the Supreme Court, but despite more than 4,000 signatures, the case has not received a response from the court.
As a result, Adrian was forced to campaign under the name appearing on his birth certificate.
– Petra De Sutter, Belgian Deputy Prime Minister
De Sutter, 58, an activist for progressive legislation on trans issues and assisted reproduction, was appointed in 2020 as one of the seven deputy prime ministers of the new Belgian coalition government.
Elected Member of the European Parliament (MEP) in 2019, De Sutter chaired the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBTQ + Rights and co-chaired the MEPs’ Group against Cancer.
The appointment of De Sutter, who is also Minister of Civil Service and Public Enterprises, has been hailed by LGBTQ + rights groups as an important step forward for trans politicians in Europe.
– Audrey Tang, Minister of Digital Taiwan
Tang, 40, became minister of digital in 2016 and is the youngest to have hold a ministerial position in Taiwan.