Gay Geneticist Reportedly Named to U.S. AIDS Panel
A New York geneticist active in the gay rights movement has been named by President Reagan to a 13-member federal advisory commission on AIDS, Administration sources said Monday.
The sources, speaking on condition that they not be named, identified the panelist as Dr. Frank Lilly, head of genetics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.
Lilly, who had not received official word of his appointment, said he thought it was important to have a homosexual on the federal panel.
“I’ve never considered myself an activist, but I’m openly gay,” he said in a telephone interview.
White House spokesman Marlin Fitzwater refused to discuss the makeup of the commission, saying its members would be announced on Thursday, when Reagan meets with the panel at the National Institutes of Health.
When he created the panel a month ago, Reagan named Mayo Clinic endocrinologist W. Eugene Mayberry as chairman.