WASHINGTON, DC – Today, after President Joe Biden announced the nomination of Frank Kendall to be the next Secretary of the Air Force, as well as several other key nominations to senior U.S. Department of Defense posts, U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), the Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), praised the nominees, who include:

  • Gina Ortiz Jones, Nominee for Under Secretary of the Air Force, Department of Defense
  • Caroline Krass, Nominee for General Counsel, Department of Defense
  • Heidi Shyu, Nominee for Under Secretary for Research and Engineering, Department of Defense

Reed stated: “This is a dynamic slate of nominees who will help safeguard the nation, support our service men and women, and help lead the Pentagon into the future.  Each of them must be thoroughly vetted and carefully evaluated.  I will work with my colleagues on the committee to hold nomination hearings in a timely manner.  And together we will ensure the United States military is properly trained, ready, and equipped to meet the full spectrum of challenges and threats we face.”

Senator Reed and Frank Kendall graduated together from West Point in 1971.  Mr. Kendall has more than 45 years of experience in engineering, management, defense acquisition, and national security affairs in private industry, government, and the military.  He served as Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics (ATL) from 2012 to 2017.  In addition to graduating from West Point, he also has an M.S. in aerospace engineering from California Institute of Technology, an M.B.A. from the C.W. Post Center of Long Island University, and a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.

“Frank Kendall is an outstanding pick to serve as the next Secretary of the Air Force.  He has been confirmed by unanimous consent twice and is an exemplary public servant.  He is well known to this committee and the Air Force will benefit from his continued leadership.  Frank is a proven, effective leader.  He’s got the skill, experience, integrity, and temperament you want from the top civilian leader of the Air Force,” said Reed.

After the Administration announces its intent to nominate civilian leaders, their official paperwork and background checks must be sent to SASC before the Committee can schedule a confirmation hearing.  That process usually takes several weeks.

Acting Secretary of the Air Force John Roth will continue to serve in that capacity until SASC holds a hearing and vote and the full U.S. Senate confirms Frank Kendall.