The Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney who has served as a liaison between the law enforcement and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender communities is moving over to City Hall.
Mayor Nutter announced Monday that Helen "Nellie" L. Fitzpatrick will be the city's new Director of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Affairs, effective Jan. 20.
Fitzpatrick will filling the seat left empty by Gloria Casarez, 42, the city's first director of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender affairs, who died in October of cancer.
"I promise to work tirelessly to ensure the legacy of Gloria Casarez," Fitzpatrick said in a statement issued by the mayor's office. "It is my goal that each and every member of our LGBTQ community feels welcome, represented, heard, recognized, respected and appreciated within our city's government. As an out and proud lesbian and Philadelphian - I am here to serve, protect and share in the joy that is our citizenship in the great City of Philadelphia."
For the past six years, Fitzpatrick has been working in the Philadelphia Office of the District Attorney as an Assistant District Attorney. She worked as a prosecutor in the Family Violence and Sexual Assault Unit and most recently, in the Southwest Bureau where she tried armed robbery and weapons offences cases.
Fitzpatrick also served as the LGBT liaison to the district attorney's office. In that role, she worked to strengthen ties between the Philadelphia Police Department and the LGBT community and also served as the point-person on police investigations of crimes affecting LGBT victims.
"Nellie has a proven track record of coalition building and getting stuff done. We are eager for the energy and enthusiasm that she will infuse into our diverse City, including prioritizing inclusiveness," Nutter said in a statement. "We miss Gloria's vibrancy, but I know that she would, above anything else, want the good work that she championed to continue."