President Obama is setting records for the number of women and non-Whites nominated to serve as judges, which are lifetime appointments. Nearly 50 percent of the 73 candidates he has tapped for the bench have been women. By contrast, 22 percent of the judges named by President George W. Bush were women, as were 28 percent of those named by President Bill Clinton. About 25% of Obama’s appointees have been African Americans, 10% Hispanics and 11% Asian Americans.
Beyond those impressive figures, there are 14 Asia-Pacific Americans on the federal bench, and Obama named half of them, including the first Vietnamese American, the first Chinese American and the first Korean American.
Obama has also appointed the highest-ranking gay official ever when he named John Berry as director of the Office of Personnel Management, which oversees the nation's 1.9 million federal workers. He also named Amanda Simpson, the first openly transgender appointee, as a senior technical adviser in the Commerce Department.