President Barack Obama on Thursday congratulated Nitza Quinones Alejandro on her confirmation to the federal judiciary.

The Senate earlier in the day confirmed Quinones to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, making her the first-ever openly gay Latina confirmed to the federal bench.

Obama noted her confirmation during an annual Gay Pride reception held at the White House.

“[E]ven though she couldn't be here today, because she's getting ready to finally taker her seat on the bench and get to work, I want to congratulate Nitza Quinones Alejandro, who, just a few hours ago, was confirmed by the Senate, making her the first openly gay Hispanic federal judge in our country's history,” Obama said during a brief speech.

The president first nominated Quinones, a Puerto Rico native, for the position in November on the recommendation of Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey, a Democrat. Obama renominated her at the start of the 113th Congress in January.

Since 1991, Quinones has served as a judge on the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas.