Who is US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin?

RETIRED US Army General, Lloyd Austin, rose through the ranks of the military before serving in Joe Biden’s federal cabinet.

Serving as Biden’s US Secretary of Defense, some may be curious to know more about Lloyd Austin and his high-ranking position.

Lloyd Austin was first nominated for Secretary of Defense on December 7, 2020

Lloyd Austin was first nominated for Secretary of Defense on December 7, 2020

Who is US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin?

Prior to his appointment to Defense Secretary by the United States Senate and Joe Biden, Lloyd had a long tenure with the nation’s military.

His former titles within the military include 33rd Vice Chief of Staff and 12th Commander of United States Central Command.

After 40-plus years in the armed forces, Lloyd officially retired in April 2016.

On January 22, 2021, the Senate confirmed him as the 28th Defense Secretary.

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How long has Lloyd served?

Upon his confirmation, Lloyd became the first black man to hold the position.

Biden said of his appointment: “The fact is, Austin’s many strengths and his intimate knowledge of the Department of Defense and our government are uniquely matched to the challenges and crises we face.”

“He is the person we need in this moment.”

Biden also said of Lloyd: “I’ve sought his advice, seen his command, and admired his calm and his character.”

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Lloyd stated on Twitter at the time: “It’s an honor and a privilege to serve as our country’s 28th Secretary of Defense.”

“I’m especially proud to be the first African American to hold the position. Let’s get to work.”

The Defense Secretary does not have a fixed term length.

Politician Mark Esper assumed the role before Lloyd between July 2019 and November 2020.

Lloyd Austin's career in the armed forces spanned more than 40 years

Lloyd Austin’s career in the armed forces spanned more than 40 yearsCredit: AP

What does Defense Secretary do?

The role is associated with the Executive Branch of the US government and is considered second to the Commander in Chief in the chain of command.

There are a number of responsibilities that come with Lloyd’s position.

When it comes to matters of the military, he is second in command to Joe Biden.

The Defense Secretary is also responsible for coordinating the gathering of intelligence with the National Security Council.

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