Gen. Charles Q Brown Jr. was confirmed as the Air Force’s new chief of staff.
What We Know:
- On Tuesday, June 10th, the Senate confirmed General Charles Q Brown Jr as the Air Force’s new chief of staff. This makes General Brown the first African American leader of a military service and second to sit on the Joint Chiefs of Staff since Chairman General Colin Powell.
- General Brown was first commissioned in 1984 where he became a F-16 fighter pilot and instructor. He was also an aide to the secretary and chief of staff of the US Air Force. Over the years, he notched over 2,900 flying hours and 130 combat hours, serving in Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.
- Vice President Mike Pence made an appearance in Senate to preside over the vote, which unanimously elected Brown 98 to 0. Trump also took to Twitter to celebrate Brown’s conformation, praising the General as “a Patriot and Great Leader!” and called it “A historic day for America”.
- General Brown’s appointment had been discussed since March, but came as the country grapples with its racial issues and the death of George Floyd. It also comes days after General Brown released a video discussing his struggle with race within the military.
- In the emotional message, General Brown discussed feeling stuck between “two world,”. He felt torn in trying to defend the American ideals, but being discriminated against by doing so. He recounted rising through the ranks, “feeling like the only African American in the room.” and never having a mentor “that looked like me,”.
In a New York Times Article, General Brown touched on the “burden” of his new position as an African American. He stated “I can’t fix centuries of racism in our country nor can I fix the decades of discrimination that may have impacted members of our Air Force… I’m thinking about how I can make improvements.”