HRC Blog

First Openly LGBT Judge Confirmed to Puerto Rico Supreme Court

On Monday the Puerto Rico Senate confirmed the nomination of Maite Oronoz Rodríguez. Rodríguez is the first openly LGBT judge to serve on Puerto Rico’s Supreme Court.

puerto rico flagRodríguez, a lawyer, was nominated last month by Governor Alejandro García Padilla. “I applaud her for this recognition,” said Governor Padilla. “I echo my words from when I nominated her: She is an example of what this new generation can offer to Puerto Rico.”

Last year Governor Padilla signed two bills into law that expand protections against LGBT discrimination and add language regarding sexual orientation as well as gender identity and expression to the territory's domestic violence laws. According to Washington Blade, Padilla has not come out publicly in support for same-sex marriage, only civil unions.

This month the United States Senate confirmed two more openly LGBT judges to the federal district court, Darrin Gayles and Staci Yandle. Judge Gayles is the first gay, African American male Federal judge. Judge Yandle is both the first openly lesbian judge in the Seventh Circuit, as well as the first African American judge in the Southern District in Illinois.

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