Omar Gonzalez-Pagan is Counsel and the Health Care Strategist at Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of LGBTQ people and people living with HIV. He has played a critical role in advancing the rights of LGBTQ people under the U.S. Constitution and federal civil rights laws in virtually every aspect of our lives, including education, employment, health care, and housing.
As Health Care Strategist, Gonzalez-Pagan has been a leading advocate for the Affordable Care Act, particularly as it applies to LGBTQ people. Gonzalez-Pagan serves as lead counsel in Whitman-Walker Clinic v. HHS, in which he represents a coalition of LGBTQ health care providers and organizations challenging the Trump administration’s attempts to roll back health care protections for LGBTQ people. He has been counsel in challenges to discriminatory exclusions of coverage for transgender employees’ gender-affirming health care, such as in Simonson v. Oswego County and Kadel v. Folwell; authored amicus briefs urging courts to adopt the most protective standards possible under the ACA, as he did in Ballenger v. Providence Hospital; and co-authored amicus briefs highlighting the importance of the ACA for people living with HIV and LGBTQ people, as he did in California v. Texas. Most recently, Gonzalez-Pagan has served as counsel in Doe v. Abbott, the challenge to the directives by Texas officials deeming the provision medically necessary gender-affirming care to transgender adolescents with gender dysphoria to be “child abuse.”
Gonzalez-Pagan is also an architect of Lambda Legal’s efforts to secure the ability of transgender people to obtain accurate identity documents, including birth certificates. He has served as lead counsel in Arroyo González v. Rosselló Nevares, Foster v. Andersen, MHW v. Cuomo, Gore v. Lee, and Campos v. Cohen, involving the right of transgender people born in Puerto Rico, Kansas, New York, Tennessee, and North Carolina to obtain accurate birth certificates consistent with their gender identity.
Gonzalez-Pagan received his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He also possesses a Master’s in Environmental Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Cornell University. Gonzalez-Pagan was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico.