Gen. C.Q. Brown, the Air Force’s top officer and the first Black person to head any branch of the military is anticipated to be nominated by President Joe Biden to succeed Gen. Mark Milley as the next chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, according to three persons familiar with the conversation on Thursday.
In the nation’s history, after the late Colin Powell, Brown would become the second Black Joint Chiefs chief if confirmed.
Joe Biden Has The Final Say In The Matter
According to the people, a Democratic lawmaker, a congressional aide, and a former Defense Department official familiar with the White House’s planning who all requested anonymity to discuss internal discussions, Joe Biden hasn’t given Brown the official seal and it’s unclear when he plans to make an announcement. “When President Joe Biden makes his final choice, he will inform the individual he has selected and then announce it publicly,” a National Security Council official said when asked for comment. “That hasn’t happened yet.”
According to the former DoD source, Joe Biden is waiting for the proper moment to make a choice. Former President Donald Trump disclosed his intention to nominate Milley months earlier than expected, and the current president wanted to return to a more typical pace, according to the former official. Milley’s predecessor, then-Gen. Joseph Dunford was nominated on May 21, 2015, according to the former official.
Since the beginning of the Trump administration, Brown has been considered the overwhelming favorite to succeed Milley due to his reputation and command experience in both the Middle East and the Pacific. But in recent months, the White House appeared to be seriously considering Marine Corps Commandant Gen. David Berger for the top position, making his appointment appear less certain.
After George Floyd’s passing in the summer of 2020, he spoke in a moving video about his experience rising through the ranks as the only Black pilot in a room full of white men.