Biden’s decision to tap Franchetti, an admiral with broad command and executive experience, goes against the recommendation of his Pentagon chief, but he is selecting an officer whom insiders had considered the top choice for the job. Franchetti, the current vice chief of operations for the navy, would become the first female member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Defence secretary Lloyd Austin recommended that Biden select Adm. Samuel Paparo, the current commander of the Navy’s Pacific Fleet, but instead, the official said, Biden is nominating Paparo to lead US IndoPacific Command. The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Biden chose Franchetti based on the broad scope of her experience at sea and ashore, including a number of high-level policy and administrative jobs that give her deep knowledge in budgeting and running the department. The official said Biden understands the historic nature of the nomination and believes that Franchetti will be an inspiration to sailors, both men and women.
Franchetti’s nomination will join the list of hundreds of military moves that are being held up by aRepublican senator. She is slated to serve as the acting chief beginning next month when Admiral Michael Gilday retires. Several woman have served as military service secretaries as political appointees, but never as their top uniformed officer. A woman, Adm. Linda L. Fagan, is the commandant of the Coast Guard, but she is not a member of the Joint Staff.
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