Group Pushes for Gay Man, Fred Hochberg, as Secretary of Commerce

Equal Rep, which pushed for Mary Beth Maxwell as Secretary of Labor and William White as Secretary of the Navy, is pushing for a gay Secretary of Commerce in Fred Hochberg.

HochbergWrites the group: “Fred Hochberg is the most qualified candidate for the job. Hochberg has more than 25 years of experience in business, government, civil rights activities, and philanthropy. From 1998 through 2000, he served as deputy then acting administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA), an agency elevated to cabinet rank by President Bill Clinton, with more than 4,000 employees and 100 offices across the country. At the SBA, he directed the delivery of a comprehensive set of financial and business development programs for entrepreneurs, with particular outreach to women and minorities. He also served on President Clinton’s Management Council.”

Said Equal Rep founder Paul Sousa to the Boston Globe: “It was devastating to learn that gay Americans wouldn’t have a seat at the table within Barack Obama’s Cabinet administration. They are the only minority group to have never been appointed in the history of the United States. Fred Hochberg is supremely qualified and this opening is the perfect opportunity for our President-elect to show gay Americans they have not been forgotten and he is truly committed to equal representation.”

Gay rights group advocates for commerce pick [boston globe]


  1. Derrick from Philly says

    I was also disappointed when Mary Beth Maxwell was not chosen as Secretary of Labor. But sometimes I wonder if politicians–even those as brilliant as Barack Obama–understand the difference in being gay and “openly” gay. For US Presidents, maybe having a Janet Reno, Richard Clarke (maybe?), and Janet Napolitano is the same as having “gay representation” in their cabinet.

    For those gays who argue that being gay should simply mean you have a different sexual attraction, but other than that you are “just like everybody else”; well, it kind of strenghtens the argument that the private sex life of a public figure is none of our business–that having a very private Janet Napolitano is the same as having a very public Mary Beth Maxwell or Fred Hochberg.

    If we have a Secretary of Commerce who is gay but doesn’t discuss it with anybody, and if the President knows that Commerce Secretary is gay–has that President still fulfilled his obligation to provide diversity by appointing that “very private” gay cabinet member?

    I’d prefer “openly gay”, but I remember how on other topics some of you complain about gay people who “wear their sexuality on their sleeve”–especially those of us who reject gender norms.

    Maybe we already have a gay cabinet member or two–they’re just very private about it. With his Harvard educated mind, I hope President Obama knows that aint acceptable.

  2. Brad says

    Obama has already thrown us a bone by naming a gay man as head of his steno pool. We shouldn’t expect any more from him. Face it folks, he is not exactly going to be a friend of the gays.

  3. daftpunkydavid says

    what about barney frank? he seems like a great candidate to me. f’ing smart, if you ask me…

  4. says

    Barney Frank is just another Washington A-hole.

    I want to support him because he and I are both Gay, however, for the last two years he fiddled as the one thing he was supposed to be in charge of burned.

    Our current economic crisis can be laid directly at the feet of Frank. He is no better than George Bush or any other Repug. Where was he when the banks were granted the right to raise rates on our credit cards even when we did the right thing and paid them off? Where was he when the big financial firms were raping our country? Why didn’t he require the firms which received bailouts to at least tell us where our money is being spent?

    He actually should be voted out by the voters in his district for the damage he done to our country. Just because he is gay is no reason to appoint him to anything, unless, there is a post for ex something.