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Release No: 145-00
March 24, 2000


Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen has announced the appointment of the members of a new, congressionally mandated task force to assess current domestic violence programs and policies within the Department of Defense (DoD) and the military Services. The Defense Task Force on Domestic Violence is comprised of members from the Departments of Defense, Justice, and Health and Human Services; as well as highly regarded subject matter experts from the private sector.

"On behalf of DoD servicemembers and their families, I welcome the task force and all it has to offer as we address this complex issue. Providing a safe and wholesome environment for our military families is a key quality of life objective," said Assistant Secretary of Defense for Force Management Policy Alphonso Maldon Jr. "This task force is comprised of highly experienced, extremely capable professionals. I am confident it will provide the Secretary with a comprehensive report and a plan that augments our current efforts to eliminate domestic violence within the military. I also believe its findings will help in our national efforts to address domestic violence in our communities."

The task force was established in October by the Fiscal 2000 National Defense Authorization Act. Members are charged with formulating a long-term, strategic plan that will assist the DoD in eliminating domestic violence within the Department. They will submit annual reports to the Secretary of Defense on their actions and the activities of the military departments to respond to domestic violence.

"Domestic violence is an offense against our institutional values. One incident of domestic violence is one too many," said Task Force Co-Chairman, Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Jack W. Klimp, deputy chief of staff for Manpower & Reserve Affairs. "Clearly, DoD has made a substantial commitment of human resources and dollars over the past two decades to address domestic violence. However, like civilian communities, DoD can and should continue to improve its response to this national tragedy. We should continue to be the model for the rest of society," he stated.

Department of Defense members of the task force are:

Lt. Gen. Jack W. Klimp, Marine Corps deputy chief of staff for Manpower & Reserve Affairs.Maj. Gen. Thomas J. Fiscus, deputy judge advocate general of the Air Force.

Maj. Gen. Edward Soriano, commanding general, 7th Infantry Division and Fort Carson, Colo.

Rear Adm. Annette E. Brown, assistant commander, Navy Personnel Command Personal Readiness and Community Support (PERS 6).

Brig. Gen. Joseph Composto, staff judge advocate to the commandant of the United States Marine Corps.

Brig. Gen. Leif H. Hendrickson, commanding general, Marine Corps Base Quantico.

Brig. Gen. Thomas J. Romig, U.S. Army assistant judge advocate general for Military Law and Operations.

Brig. Gen. Craig B. Whelden, commanding general United States Army Community and Family Support.

Capt. Steven W. Horton, U. S. Navy Judge Advocate General Corps, U.S. Navy, assistant staff judge advocate general for Civil Law.

Sgt. Maj. Alford L. McMichael, Sergeant Major of the United States Marine Corps.

Elizabeth T. Corliss, a member of the Senior Executive Service, director of Personnel Force Development, deputy chief of staff for Personnel, U.S. Air Force.

John McEleny, a member of the Senior Executive Service, deputy director, Naval Criminal Investigative Service.

Non-DoD members of the task force are:

Louis J. Armijo sergeant, Albuquerque, N.M. Police Department.

Judith E. Beals, executuve director of Jane Doe, Inc., Massachusettes Coalition against Sexual and Domestic Violence.

Dr. Jacquelyn C. Campbell, Anna D. Wolf Endowed Professor and Associate Dean for Doctoral Education Programs and Research, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing.

Vickii Coffey, principal owner of Vickii Coffey & Associates Consulting Firm.

Marie M. Fortune, founder and senior analyst at the Center for the Prevention of Sexual and Domestic Violence.

Connie Garcia-Sponsler, training development and audit coordinator for the Battered Women's Justice Project/Domestic Violence Resource Network.

Casey Gwinn, City Attorney of the City of San Diego.

Jackson Katz, founder and director of MVP Strategies.

Peter C. MacDonald, district judge, Third Judicial District Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Beckie Masaki, executive director and co-founder of the Asian Women's Shelter.

Catherine Pierce, director Summer of Safety Grants Program Corporation for National Service, Department of Justice.

William D. Riley, program manager for the Family Violence Prevention and Services (FVPS), Administration of Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

For additional information, please contact the task force executive director Robert L. Stein II, 703-696-9400 or 703-696-9424.

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