While it appears that President-elect Barack Obama’s cabinet won’t have LGBT representation, he is reportedly considering an out gay man to be Secretary of the Navy.
A recent article in the Washington Post reports that the COO of the Intrepid Museum Foundation, a gay civilian named William White, is being touted as a good pick for the position.
However, opponents of the idea of White as Secretary of the Navy say that having a gay man, even a civilian, in a top military-related position would carry unwelcome baggage: the military’s ban on openly gay troops.
Secretary of the Navy is always a civilian position. Once upon a time, it was a cabinet post, but hasn’t been since 1947. The Secretary of the Navy is under the command of the Secretary of Defense, a position that will continue to be filled by Robert Gates.
While several LGBT candidates were reportedly considered for cabinet positions, the final spot of labor secretary was reportedly offered to U.S. Rep. Hilda Solis, D-Calif. Mary Beth Maxwell, an out lesbian who is the founding executive director for American Rights at Work, was said to be among the contenders for the labor post.
“As we talk about either keeping or renewing Americas promise, which the president-elect has been talking about, apparently it does not yet extend to gay and lesbian people in the Cabinet of the president,” said Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of The Victory Fund.