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Obama nominates 7 to administration posts, including first openly gay military chief

By Doug G. Ware
Obama nominates 7 to administration posts, including first openly gay military chief
President Barack Obama on Friday announced several nominations to new administration assignments, including that of Eric K. Fanning as Secretary of the Army. In confirmed, Fanning would become the nation's first openly gay military service chief. Photo: UPI/Yuri Gripas | License Photo

ARLINGTON, Va., Sept. 18 (UPI) -- President Barack Obama announced Friday that he will nominate Eric K. Fanning to become Secretary of the Army -- who, if confirmed, would become the first openly gay chief to lead any military branch.

Obama issued the nomination in a news release Friday that also listed several other new administration assignments.

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In addition to Fanning, Obama nominated Shoshana Lew as financial chief of the U.S. Department of Transportation. She is the daughter of Treasury Secretary Jack Lew.

Other nominations include Janine Davidson as Under Secretary of the Navy, Lisa Disbrow as Under Secretary of the Air Force, Ricardo Aguilera as Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Financial Management, Jennifer O'Connor as Pentagon counsel and Thomas Shannon as political under secretary in the State Department.

"These fine public servants bring a depth of experience and tremendous dedication to their important roles. I look forward to working with them," Obama said.

Fanning has served as the Under Secretary of the Army and Special Assistant to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter this year. Between 2013 and 2015, he served as Under Secretary of the Air Force and acting secretary for a time in 2013 before Deborah Lee James was chosen by Obama.

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Fanning began his political career in the Bill Clinton White House in 1996 and served as a public relations associate and associate producer at CBS News.

All nominees announced Friday will need to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

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