Hooray! Puerto Rico Nominates its First Openly Lesbian Chief Justice

Hooray! Puerto Rico Nominates its First Openly Lesbian Chief Justice

Meet Maite Oronoz Rodríguez, Puerto Rico's first out lesbian to be nominated for Chief Justice.

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Governor Alejandro García Padilla selected Oronoz Rodríguez, who is the youngest member of the island’s Supreme Court, for the position on Friday.

"I accept this nomination with the energy and force of the new generation," she said of her historic nomination.

While García Padilla acknowledges that there has been some backlash from conservatives, his decision has been met with much praise as well.

U.S. Rep. Nydia Velázquez, who is also Puerto Rican, tweeted her support. “Congratulations, Maite Oronoz Rodriguez, on your nomination. Important step for LGBT community, Puerto Rico and all Americans,” the New York congresswoman said.

Omar Gonzalez-Pagan, an attorney for Lambda Legal, a U.S. civil rights organization focusing on the LGBT communities, discussed the importance of the nomination.

"For the judicial system in the United States to be truly fair, it must reflect the full range of our country's rich diversity,” he said. "Courts matter to the LGBT community in Puerto Rico and across the country. We must care about the courts if we care about our rights, our families, our neighbors and our society. We look forward to continuing our work in Puerto Rico on behalf of LGBT people and those living with HIV."  

Before assuming the position of Chief Justice, Oronoz Rodríguez must be confirmed by Puerto Rico's Senate, which García Padilla is "totally confident" it will do.

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Fingers crossed.