Pennsylvania transgender woman first female four-star admiral in U.S. history


Rachel Levine is the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health and former Pennsylvania Health Secretary. She is the highest-ranking transgender official in U.S. history.

Additionally, she is a 4-star admiral making her not only the first openly transgender four-star officer in the Uniformed Services but the first female four-star admiral.

In October 2021, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services announced:

"Admiral Levine now serves as the highest ranking official in the USPHS Commissioned Corps and its first-ever female four-star admiral. Admiral Levine will lead 6,000 Public Health Service officers who are dedicated to serving our nation’s most underserved and vulnerable populations."

About Admiral Levine

Dr. Levine is a pediatrician and attended Harvard College and the Tulane University School of Medicine. She was born in Massachusetts to her mother and father who were both lawyers.

In 1993 she moved to Pennsylvania and began working at Penn State Hershey Medical Center. Eventually, she was nominated for the position of Pennsylvania Physician General in 2015.

She successfully completed her term as Pennsylvania Physician General until 2017 when she was appointed Secretary of Health, and in a rare feat, was unanimously confirmed by the Pennsylvania State Senate.

Dr. Levine was eventually nominated by President Joe Biden to be assistant secretary for health.

Personal Life

The four-star admiral is a parent to two children, David and Dayna. Dr. Levine made the decision to officially transition in 2011. She remained married to her spouse, Martha Peaslee Levine, for two years after the transition until 2013 when they decided to separate.

Peaslee and Admiral Levine met in medical school in 1988.

Dr. Levine is 64 years old and was sworn into her current office on March 26, 2021.

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