U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health Rachel Levine, who identifies as a transgender female, claimed the title of the “first female four-star officer” in a video boasting about “diversity” for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
“I am honored to serve as the first female four-star officer of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, and the first openly transgender four-star officer to serve across any of the eight uniformed services,” Levine said in a video posted Tuesday.
The Biden administration swore in the assistant health secretary as a four-star admiral on Tuesday, dubbing Levine the “first-ever female four-star admiral” of USPHS Commissioned Corps, The Daily Wire reported.
Aside from Levine and the Biden administration, establishment media, such as The Washington Post, echoed the health secretary’s apparent achievement as the “organization’s first-ever female four-star admiral.”
“This is a momentous occasion,” Levine continued in the address post-swearing-in. “And I am honored to take this role, for the impact that I can make and for the historic nature of what it symbolizes.”
“I stand on the shoulders of those LGBTQ+ individuals who came before me, both those known and unknown,” Levine said. “May this appointment today be the first of many more to come, as we create a diverse and more inclusive future.”
“Diversity makes us stronger,” the secretary asserted. “Each person has a different perspective and different strengths that they bring to make the whole community stronger. The time is now for our country to continue to move the bar forward for diversity. And I am proud to wear this uniform and answer that call.”
Levine went on to promise a commitment to “follow the science to build a healthier future, where we work to create an environment in which no one is left behind.”
“The health of our nation is paramount; everyone should be treated with love, respect, and compassion,” Levine closed.
In a press release, the HHS echoed Levine’s words.
“The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) publicly announced today the nation’s first openly transgender four-star officer across any of the eight uniformed services of the United States,” the department said Tuesday. “Admiral Rachel Levine, who serves as the HHS Assistant Secretary for Health and head of the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps, was ceremonially sworn in as a four-star admiral.”
“Admiral Levine now serves as the highest ranking official in the USPHS Commissioned Corps and its first-ever female four-star admiral. Admiral Levine will lead 6,000 Public Health Service officers who are dedicated to serving our nation’s most underserved and vulnerable populations,” the statement continued. “Today’s historic announcement builds on the accomplishments of LGBTQ+ History Month and is a major step forward as we work to create a more inclusive society.”
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