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Gay ex-Chicagoan gets White House post
by Ross Forman, Windy City Times

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Miguel A. Ayala—a Whitney Young High School alum who launched the first LGBT student organization in a Chicago public high school and is a member of the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame—has been named the deputy director of communications at the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ).

Ayala, 33, is now living in Washington D.C.

"I am very excited to be serving in President Obama's administration, and look forward to being able to help spread the word about the great things being done to help protect our environment," said Ayala, who noted that his job goals are to "harness the power of social media and traditional press to make CEQ a name people recognize."

Ayala said he learned of the job online and applied. He admitted that "it also helped to have the support of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the Victory Fund's Appointments Project and several of my previous supervisors."

The CEQ post "is an opportunity to continue serving my country and be a part of the great work President Obama is doing, and helping make sure the average American knows about what that work means to them."

Ayala was the co-chair and on the board at large of the Gay, Lesbian and Allies Senate Staff (GLASS) Caucus. "By serving as a resource to LGBT staffers in the U.S. Senate, we were able to create a community for staff, and be helpful to interns and others looking to work in the Senate, while also engaging the Senate community at large on issues affecting our community," he said.

The chair of the CEQ, Nancy Sutley, is one of the highest ranking lesbians in the president's administration.

"Chairwoman Nancy Sutley has dedicated her life to improving and protecting our environment, and has been a leader in the LGBT community," Ayala said. "I look forward to the opportunity to learn from her and to work with her on achieving the president's goals.

"At some point, I'd like to return to Chicago and find a way to contribute to the city I love so much. Time will tell when and how that contribution will be, because for now, I'm focused on this new role and enjoying my time in D.C."

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