The White House announced Friday afternoon that President Barack
Obama intends to nominate Erik F. Fanning as the next secretary of the
Army, a move that would make Fanning the first openly gay person to lead
the Army if confirmed by the Senate.
Fanning has served as acting under secretary of the Army since June
2015 and previously served as special assistant to Secretary of Defense
Ash Carter. He has a long record of national security service in the
military and Congress which dates back more than two decades. The
47-year-old, however, has no record of military service, but it is not a
requirement for the position and many who have held the position have
Erik Fanning. (Image source: Department of Defense)
The White House announced the nomination in a news release with several others.
“These fine public servants bring a depth of experience and
tremendous dedication to their important roles,” Obama said. “I look
forward to working with them.”
Fanning was already the highest ranking openly gay member in the Department of Defense.
The American Military Partner Association, a non-profit group that
bills itself as the largest organization advocating for LGBT service
members and veterans, applauded the decision.
“We are thrilled to see Eric Fanning nominated to lead the world’s
greatest Army,” the group’s president, Ashley Broadway-Mack, said in a
statement. “History continues to be written and equality marches forward
with the nomination of an openly gay man to serve in this significantly
“Fanning’s expertise and knowledge within the defense community
together with his sensitivity to issues faced by LGBT service members
and their families is why we urge the Senate to move quickly to confirm
his appointment,” Broadway-Mack added.Well that shore oughta make the Army better……he’ll probably take the soldiers guns away & give them a purse to carry…..I can see it now, telling the enemy to put their guns down or I’ll hit you with my purse or when they capture an enemy soldier it will be…”ok pull your pants down & bend over”