On Memorial Day, President Obama announced new leadership for the Department of Defense, naming General Martin E. Dempsey to replace Admiral Mike Mullen as the next Chairman and Admiral James Winnefeld as Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. General Raymond Odierno has also been named to replace General Dempsey as Army Chief of Staff.
Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Buck McKeon released the following statement:
“With the announcement of new leadership at the Pentagon, the term of one of the nation’s most faithful servants will soon come to an end. Admiral Mike Mullen will be deeply missed. Over a lifetime of service to the nation, his dedication and military prowess have garnered him the utmost respect as a trusted national security professional.
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“But our men and women in uniform remain in capable hands with General Dempsey and Admiral Winnefeld.
"General Dempsey's talent as a leader and unyielding professionalism are needed now more than ever. His stalwart stewardship of a tough command in Iraq, along with his outstanding record as Commander of Army Training and Doctrine Command, demonstrate that President Obama's new senior military adviser is an officer of the highest caliber.
"The addition of Admiral Winnefeld only heightens this cast of military professionals. A seasoned pilot, Admiral Winnefeld's actions commanding the USS Enterprise after 9/11 were nothing short of inspiring, as was his service protecting the American homeland as Commander of U.S. Northern Command.
"Though General Dempsey's tenure as was regrettably short, I applaud the appointment of General Raymond Odierno to be the next Chief of Staff of the Army. General Odierno's storied career as a combat leader, as well as his remarkable accomplishments in Iraq, speak louder than any words.
"I look forward to working with all of these indispensable leaders as our military navigates through uncertain waters, and wish them great success as they assume their new postings.”