President-elect Biden is adding another LGBTQ+ community member to the White House.
Gautam Raghavan, who served in the Obama administration, has been appointed by Biden to serve as the deputy director for the Office of Presidential Personnel. In this position, Raghavan will be responsible for recruiting and vetting candidates for over 4,000 political appointments to federal agencies. Raghavan, a gay Indian-American, previously worked as the White House liaison for the LGBTQ, Asian-American, and Pacific Islander communities under President Obama. He also led many conversations on immigration reform, transgender rights, and marriage equality in his previous position.
“These experienced individuals are joining my administration to carry out policies that will put our nation on a path to building back better than ever before,” Biden wrote in a press release. “They are respected leaders whose values and priorities align with my own and who will dutifully execute their roles to serve the American people.”
Raghavan’s appointment to his position has been praised by many advocacy groups, including the LGBTQ Victory Fund, which works to elect queer candidates to political offices around the country.
“Gautam’s appointment demonstrates the president-elect’s long-term commitment to building an administration that is reflective of America,” wrote Annise Parker, the organization’s president, in a statement. “He believes a diverse administration best serves the president and our nation and will ensure appointing qualified LGBTQ people, women, and people of color at every level of government remains a priority for the next four years.”
“Gautam also understands our community is not monolithic and that LGBTQ people of all races, sexual orientations, and gender identities must be part of the new administration,” the statement reads. “He is an excellent choice and our Presidential Appointments Initiative team looks forward to continue working with him.”
Raghavan himself celebrated his new position in a post on his Twitter. “It’s time again for an administration that looks like America — and will produce results that are good for ALL Americans,” Raghavan tweeted. “I’m honored to serve. Let’s go!”