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Statement by Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook on Brad Carson's Decision to Depart DoD

Press Operations

Release No: NR-087-16
March 14, 2016
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Brad Carson, the Department of Defense's top official overseeing military and civilian personnel policy and total force readiness, has announced he will depart his post in April. Carson was appointed the acting undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness by President Obama in 2015 and was the president's nominee to succeed previous Under Secretary Jessica Wright. Carson informed the White House and Secretary Carter of his decision to depart his post after successfully developing a series of key personnel and readiness initiatives at the request of the secretary.

Carson first joined the Obama Administration in 2011, after he was nominated by President Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as general counsel of the U.S. Army. After serving two years as Army General Counsel, Carson was nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate as the 35th Under Secretary of the Army. Before joining the Obama Administration, Carson held positions in academia and the private sector, served as U.S. Congressman from Oklahoma, deployed to Iraq as a Navy Reservist, and served as a White House Fellow during the Clinton Administration.

Upon assuming his duties as acting undersecretary of defense in April 2015, Carson was directed by Secretary Carter to lead the historic Force of the Future initiative, developing a broad portfolio of innovative proposals to modernize DoD's civilian and military personnel systems. In addition, Carson oversaw revisions to the Military Equal Opportunity policy; instituted the largest reorganization of the Personnel and Readiness organization since its formation, including a twenty percent reduction in size and a renewed focus on total force readiness; and managed Secretary Carter's Women in Service Review. Carson led with a passion for improving the quality of life of service members and their families and advancing the secretary's focus on improving long term mission effectiveness, readiness, retention and recruiting across the department's military and civilian workforces.

"Brad Carson has developed some of the most important and groundbreaking work in years to modernize our personnel policies," said Secretary Carter. "At my direction, he charted a path forward for the department and our people that will leave a lasting legacy, and will improve the mission effectiveness, readiness and the quality of life for our civilian workforce, uniformed service members and families. I asked him to serve in this important role, and I am grateful for his service, leadership, and commitment to our Force of the Future."

"I'm very grateful to the men and women of the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness," said Carson. "Their commitment to those that serve our country, in and out of uniform, is unparalleled, and I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to have served with such an outstanding team." Carson also said, "I am especially thankful for the visionary and courageous leadership of Secretary Carter. Without his support, we would not have been able to achieve half of what we've done."