The Justice Department on Friday announced the promotion of Stuart F. Delery to acting associate attorney general.

The Senate last August confirmed Delery as the department's assistant attorney general for the Civil Division.

Friday's promotion makes Delery the highest-ranking openly gay person to serve in the Justice Department.

HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow applauded the move.

“With an extensive amount of experience in his role as Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division, as well as his role leading the team of lawyers coordinating the government-wide implementation of the Windsor decision, Delery is an exceptionally qualified leader who is committed to justice,” said Warbelow. “The nation should take pride in knowing we have such a fine public servant.”

According to a Justice Department bio, Delery graduated from Yale Law School and the University of Virginia. He clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Byron R. White and for Chief Judge Gerald B. Tjoflat of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit.