President Obama has appointed Amanda Simpson to be a senior technical adviser to the Commerce Department. In a statement, Simpson said she was proud to be one of the first transgender presidential appointees to the federal government and that she hopes to “soon be one of hundreds.” A former test pilot, Simpson worked for defense contractor Raytheon for more than a decade and made the transition from male to female at the company. She was key to convincing Raytheon to add gender identity and expression to its equal-opportunity policy and recently served as deputy director in advanced technology development there. Simpson ran unsuccessfully for the Arizona statehouse in 2005, and was a delegate for Hillary Clinton at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
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