The Senate last night confirmed several high-level Pentagon nominees, including one official intended to be the Defense Department's new No. 3 and one who will perform the role of chief innovation officer.
Jay Gibson was confirmed as the Pentagon's new chief management officer, a post established by the Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act to be the third-most senior position at DOD. Gibson is the former president and chief executive of XCOR Aerospace. He was previously confirmed as the deputy CMO.
Former NASA Administrator Michael Griffin was confirmed as the new under secretary of defense for research and engineering. The position was created amid the congressionally mandated elimination of the USD for acquisition, technology and logistics. While Griffin will be DOD's de facto chief innovation officer, Ellen Lord, the new USD for acquisition and sustainment, is tasked with managing DOD's procurement system.
Former Army acquisition official Kevin Fahey was confirmed as assistant secretary of defense for acquisition, while William Roper, the current director of the Strategic Capabilities Office was confirmed as the Air Force's top acquisition executive.