Biden nominates female admiral to lead US Navy


US Navy

WASHINGTON: US President Joe Biden has nominated admiral Lisa Franchetti to lead the US Navy, making her the first woman to hold the position if confirmed by the Senate.

The historic appointment would also mark her as the first woman to serve on the Joint Chiefs of Staff and as a Pentagon service chief.

In an official statement on Friday, President Biden praised Admiral Franchetti’s extensive expertise in both operational and policy arenas, citing her 38 years of dedicated service to the nation as a commissioned officer.

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Admiral Franchetti, who was currently serving as the Vice Chief of Naval Operations, has become the second woman ever to achieve the rank of four-star admiral in the US Navy after Michelle Howard.

Franchetti’s career included commanding the US 6th Fleet and US naval forces in South Korea, as well as serving as Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Warfighting Development and director for Strategy, Plans, and Policy of the Joint Staff. Additionally, she has been a notable aircraft carrier strike commander.

Meanwhile, the nomination received mixed reactions, with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin initially recommending Admiral Samuel Paparo, the current commander of the Navy’s Pacific Fleet, for the top Navy job.

President Biden chose Admiral Franchetti for the role and named Paparo as the chief of the US Indo-Pacific Command.

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Admiral Linda L. Fagan currently leads the US Coast Guard, making her the head of another major armed service branch, but she is not a member of the Joint Staff as the Coast Guard falls under the Department of Homeland Security, not the Defense Department.

Meanwhile, Admiral Franchetti’s confirmation remained uncertain as Senator Tommy Tuberville was blocking military promotions over Pentagon’s abortion travel policy.

President Biden has expressed concern over the delay caused by Senator Tuberville’s actions, stating that it not only hinders the confirmation of nominees but also poses risks to the US Armed Forces’ strength.

Among the stalled nominations were Vice Admiral James Kilby for vice chief of Naval Operations and Vice Admiral Stephen Koehler for commander of the Pacific Fleet.

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