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Christine Wormuth Makes History As The 1st Female Secretary Of The Army

The U.S. Senate confirmed Christine Wormuth on Thursday by unanimous consent as the next secretary of the Army, establishing her as the first woman in the service branch's top civilian post.

Wormuth, who most recently was the director of the International Security and Defense Policy Center at RAND, has a strong background in defense policy and national security.

Her nomination, and now confirmation, is being hailed as a major milestone for women in what has been a male-dominated arena.

The Biden administration has made an effort to increase the number of experienced women in top national security posts. Wormuth joins Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks, who holds the number-two position at the Pentagon, in one of the most senior jobs at the Department of Defense.

Wormuth's confirmation hearing earlier this month before the Senate Armed Services Committee went ahead without incident. She was confirmed Wednesday night by unanimous consent, but her confirmation was then rescinded without explanation.

Thursday morning after his opening remarks, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer quickly finalized her confirmation, again by unanimous consent. A Democratic aide told NPR the chamber had to first address a clerical error related to the previous night's legislative activity.

Wormuth is well-known by those among Biden's staff who are carryovers from the Obama administration. She joined the Obama administration in 2009 as principal deputy assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense and civil support. She also served as the senior director for defense policy on the National Security Council. From 2014 to 2016, she was the undersecretary of defense for policy, the third-ranking position at the Pentagon.

Wormuth was also a member of the Biden administration's Defense Agency Review team during the presidential transition in January.

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