WASHINGTON — The Senate confirmed Barbara Barrett to be the 25th Secretary of the Air Force by a margin of 85 to 7.
The vote on Oct. 16 makes Barrett the third consecutive woman confirmed to lead the Air Force and its 685,000 airmen. Barrett replaces Heather Wilson who resigned in May. Undersecretary Matthew Donovan served as acting secretary in the interim.
“I can think of no position that offers more excitement, challenge and meaning than the Secretary of the Air Force,” Barrett said in a news release.
Barrett is a former U.S. ambassador to Finland, four-term chairman of the space-focused non-profit Aerospace Corporation, governance vice chairman of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Caltech, and deputy administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration. Barrett was the first civilian woman to land a Navy F/A-18 fighter on an aircraft carrier and was certified for space travel.
“Ambassador Barrett has had an impressive career both inside and outside of government,” said Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.).
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein praised Barrett in a statement: “This is an exciting day for our Air Force. Secretary Barrett brings an incredible background and a level of strategic understanding that will propel us ...