President Biden has tapped current Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles “CQ” Brown Jr. to replace Army Gen. Mark Milley as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Gen. Brown is a career F-16 fighter pilot with a deep knowledge of China. According to his Air Force bio, he has more than 2,900 flight hours, including 130 combat hours.
Brown’s confirmation would be historic in that for the first time, the Pentagon’s top military and civilian positions would be held by Black men. Lloyd Austin has been Secretary of Defense since Biden took office in January 2021.
Gen. Milley’s term as Joint Chiefs Chairman ends in October. Biden was set to officially announce Brown’s nomination at a Rose Garden event Thursday afternoon.
Biden reportedly tapped Brown because of his work to modernize the military’s fleet of aircraft and its nuclear capabilities, as well as for his experience in shaping U.S. defenses to meet rising competition from China.
Brown has also been deeply involved in Pentagon efforts to provide Ukraine with tens of billions of dollars worth of military aid amid Kyiv’s 15-month long war with Russia.
At age 60, Brown has commanded at every possible level in the Air Force and in joint commands, including in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. He also helped build and lead the U.S. air campaign against ISIS.