We previously reported that President Obama had nominated Staci Yandle to preside over the U.S. District Court in Illinois.
Today, it was announced that both Yandle and Darrin Gayles have been confirmed as federal judges. Yandle is now the second black lesbian–and the first in 20 years–to be confirmed; Gayles becomes the first openly gay black male to serve as a federal judge.
National Black Justice Coalition press release:
Today, the Senate confirmed Attorney Staci Yandle and Judge Darrin Gayles to become federal judges on the U.S. District Courts in Illinois and Florida, respectively. Ms. Yandle, a practicing attorney for over 20 years, will be the second Black, openly lesbian judge confirmed to the federal bench. Judge Gayles will become the nation’s first Black, openly gay male to serve on the federal bench. Both nominees received overwhelming support from the Senate during their confirmation votes: Ms. Yandle was confirmed by a vote of 52 to 44, and Judge Gayles was confirmed by a vote of 98 to 0.
“I am thrilled that the Senate has confirmed Attorney Yandle and Judge Gayles to the federal bench,” says Sharon Lettman-Hicks, NBJC Executive Director and CEO. “NBJC celebrates both confirmations that will inspire so many in the Black and LGBT communities. In addition, we celebrate the vast life experiences that they will take with them to the federal bench as they work to render impartial decisions. It’s a significant sign of progress in our nation when two individuals are judged solely on their merits when being considered for these important lifetime appointments.”
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