At the White House on Thursday, Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. listens as President Joe Biden announces his intent to nominate Brown to serve as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Photo by Jim Lo Scalzo/UPI | License Photo
May 25 (UPI) -- Gen. Charles Q. Brown, the Air Force's top officer, was nominated on Thursday as the next Joint Chiefs chair. If confirmed, he would be the first Black chairman in 30 years.
Brown would replace Army Gen. Mark Milley, whose four-year term ends this fall. If he is confirmed, Brown would become the first Black Joint Chiefs chair since Colin Powell.
During an event in the White House Rose Garden, President Biden called Brown a "warrior."
"He knows what it means to be in the thick of battle and how to keep your cool when things get hard," he said. "He gained the respect of our allies and partners around the world who regard Gen. Brown as a trusted partner and a top-notch strategist."
Biden noted that Brown's father, U.S. Army Col. C.Q. Brown, served in Vietnam, and his grandfather, U.S. Army Master Sergeant Robert E. Brown, Jr., was in charge of a segregated unit of soldiers in World War II.
Biden lauded Brown's firsthand knowledge of U.S. operational theaters around the world and how they all work together to ensure the security of the American people.
"And while Gen. Brown is a proud, butt-kicking American airman, first and always he's also been an operational leader of the joint force," Biden said.
"With Gen. Brown as chairman, I know I'll be able to rely on his advice as a military strategist and as a leader of military innovation, dedicated to keeping our Armed Forces the best in the world," Biden said. "And they are the best in the history of the world, and that's a fact."
According to the New York Times, Brown won out over his closest competitor, the Marine Corps commandant, Gen. David H. Berger. He has commanded troops in the Middle East as head of U.S. Air Forces Central Command, and was serving in Europe when Russia illegally annexed Crimea in 2014, according to Politico.
During the George Floyd protests in 2020, Brown posted a five-minute video online, expressing his support for the protestors.
"I'm thinking about how full I am with emotion not just for George Floyd, but the many African Americans that have suffered the same fate as George Floyd," Brown said in the video, according to the New York Times. "I'm thinking about protests in my country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, the equality expressed in our Declaration of Independence and the Constitution that I have sworn my adult life to support and defend. I'm thinking about a history of racial issues and my own experiences that didn't always sing of liberty and equality."