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U.S. Senate confirms first openly gay black judge

The first openly gay black judge on the U.S. federal bench will serve in the southern district in Florida.
By Frances Burns   |   June 17, 2014 at 8:58 PM   |   Comments

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WASHINGTON, June 17 (UPI) -- The U.S. Senate voted unanimously Tuesday to confirm the first openly gay black judge in the federal courts.

Darrin P. Gayles will serve in the southern district of Florida. He has been a Florida circuit judge since 2011 and was previously a county judge and is a graduate of the George Washington University law school..

Steve Adkins, president of the Miami-Dade Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, said the 97-0 vote was a testimony to Gayles' character.

"I'm so proud of him. That is such wonderful news. Not only is it a milestone, it's such a great reward for a job well done," Adkins, an old friend, said.

President Obama named Gayles in February. Last year, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., after supporting the nomination of Circuit Judge William L. Thomas, another black gay judge, to the southern district, blocked the appointment.

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