(SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE) — A Los Angeles attorney won Senate confirmation to the federal bench on Thursday and will become California’s first openly gay federal judge.

President Obama nominated Michael Fitzgerald, a former federal prosecutor, in July to the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. Obama has named three other gay men or lesbians to the bench, and two, Paul Oetken and Alison Nathan, both of New York, have been confirmed.

The nation’s only other openly gay or lesbian federal judge is Deborah Batts of New York, appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1994. San Francisco’s former chief federal judge, Vaughn Walker, confirmed media reports that he is gay after retiring from the bench in February 2011.

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