President Obama has appointed smart and talented gay people to positions within his administration, but the appointment of Mark Perriello to the White House Office of Presidential Personnel is the one that I am most excited about. Mark will focus on recruiting federal employees.
Mark and I have been friends since 2000 when we were both on staff at HRC. Over the last eight years we have worked together, danced together, argued politics, scoped out boys and vied for the affections of his kitties Apollo and Starbuck. Mark has proven himself again and again to be incredibly intelligent, creative, focused and fiercely loyal.
If I could choose one person to get political with, it would be Mark.
Before being appointed to work with the Obama administration, Mark headed the Presidential Appointments Project, a partnership of twelve organizations committed to identifying LGBT people willing to serve in the new administration. Through his work with the Project Mark has worked with nearly 1,500 LGBT people who have sought jobs with the Obama administration.
Openly gay appointments to the Obama administration include:
John Berry - Director of the Office of Personnel Management
Brad Kiley - Director of the White House Office of Management and Administration
Fred Hochberg - Chairman of the Export-Import Bank
Brian Bond - Deputy Director of the White House Office of Public Liaison
Dave Noble - White House Liaison, NASA
Nancy Sutley - Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality
David Medina - Deputy Chief of Staff for the First Lady
Ebs Burrnough - Deputy Social Secretary
Karine Jean-Pierre--White House Liaison, Depart of Labor
Anthony Bernal - Director of Scheduling for Dr. Jill Biden
Here is what Chuck Wolfe, President and CEO of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund had to say about Mark Perriello.
For more than a year we have coordinated the LGBT community's
Presidential Appointments Project. At the helm of the Project, Mark Perriello spent countless hours advocating on behalf of openly LGBT applicants for presidential appointments. His dedication and hard work has been noted by members of the Obama-Biden Transition Team, who publicly lauded the Project for its organization and professionalism. So it is my great pleasure to announce that Mark himself has accepted an appointment to work for President Obama. Starting Monday, Mark will be a Director in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel.
I am proud of Mark's work at the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Leadership Institute. His appointment is a testament to the ability he demonstrated during this Project to bring together diverse groups, identify common goals and navigate competing interests. He will be a tremendous asset as President Obama works to build an administration that reflects the diversity of America.