Release
Immediate Release

Statement by Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III on the Recent Confirmation of Appointees

July 25, 2021

I was very pleased this week to see the Senate confirm a stellar group of national security experts to my team: Heidi Shyu as Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering; Gina Ortiz Jones as Under Secretary of the Air Force; Meredith Berger as Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations, and Environment; Shawn Skelly as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Readiness; Caroline Krass as General Counsel; and Dr. Ely Ratner as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific security affairs.

These deeply qualified public servants represent decades of combined expertise and leadership in national security and defense policy, and I am grateful for their willingness to serve the country at this critical time.

As we embark on my second trip to the Indo-Pacific, I am delighted for the opportunity to administer the oath to Ely aboard the aircraft. His experience and acumen will prove essential as we work to strengthen our powerful network of allies and partners in the region.