Skip To Content

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe

Jewish Transgender Woman Named White House LGBT Liaison

President Obama has promoted the first openly transgender person to work in the West Wing to be the White House’s top liaison to the LGBT community.

Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, who is Jewish, has been serving as the Outreach and Recruitment Director in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel since last year.

Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, praised the decision.

She : “Raffi is a great choice,” she said. “President Obama has said he wants his administration to look like America, and they have moved to include trans Americans. Raffi’s skills and personality make her the exact right person for this important job.”

Freedman-Gurspan was born in Intibuca, Honduras and adopted as an infant by a Brookline, Massachusetts family.

She attended St. Olaf College in St. Paul, Minnesota and after graduating interned with the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition.

Massachusetts State Representative Carl Sciorino hired her as his legislative aide, making her the first openly transgender staffer in the Massachusetts State House.

The liaison post was previously held by Aditi Hardikar, who was appointed in 2014 but stepped down to join Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.


Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.