Obama nominates Carter to be DoD No. 2

Ashton Carter would take over for Bill Lynn, who announced in July he is retiring.

By Jason Miller
Executive Editor
Federal News Radio

President Obama announced he has nominated Ashton Carter to be the next deputy secretary of defense.

Carter will replace William Lynn, who announced in July his intention to retire.

Lynn has promised to stay on the job until a successor is named. Carter, who has served as undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics since 2009, must be confirmed by the Senate.

Carter, who also would assume DoD’s chief management officer role, would take over for Lynn during a time of major change for the military. The Pentagon’s budget is expected to be reduced by hundreds of billions, likely forcing Lynn’s successor’s hand on decisions about personnel and systems. DoD also will continue to pull troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan in the coming year.

The new deputy secretary would also take on the oversight of the implementation of DoD’s cybersecurity strategy.

During his tenure as undersecretary, Carter has focused on improving the acquisition process and finding cuts beyond weapons systems. He also pushed for DoD to have the ability to keep some departmental savings to reinvest in mission-critical programs.

Before coming to DoD, Carter was the chairman of the International and Global Affairs faculty at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and co-director of the Preventive Defense Project. From 1993 to 1996, he served as assistant secretary of defense for international security policy.

“Carter has excelled in his current role as undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics,” said Defense Secretary Leon Panetta in a statement. “His rapid and responsive support to the warfighter, and technical and program expertise are transforming the way this department does business and acquires weapons systems.”

In his statement, Panetta also touted Carter’s role to “ensure that the weapons the United States military buys are more effective and more affordable.” Panetta added that he looked forward to having Carter as a partner to “drive solutions to the strategic management challenges facing the Department of Defense.”

In addition to Carter, the President also plans to nominate:

  • I. Charles McCullough III to be the inspector general of the intelligence community in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence;
  • Ernest Mitchell, Jr to be the administrator of the United States Fire Administration in the Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • Nancy Ware to be the director of Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia
  • Gregory Woods to be the Energy Department’s general counsel


Defense Deputy Secretary Lynn to step down

DoD to cut more than just weapons systems

Carter: DoD needs acquisition ‘fast lane’

For DoD, a penny saved is now a penny earned

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