Pentagon chief taps VA official for public affairs post

Pentagon chief taps VA official for public affairs post
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Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced on Monday he is naming Maura Sullivan, a former Marine and Iraq War veteran, as the new assistant to the defense secretary for public affairs.

"Her life of service and leadership, both in an out of uniform, make her uniquely qualified to run the Pentagon's public affairs team during this crucial time for the nation and the department," said Carter in a statement.

"Her understanding of both operational and management issues will be crucial as we seek to tackle the full range of challenges facing the department today from securing a lasting defeat of ISIL to establishing the military's Force of the Future," he said. 

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"She is a true talent and the experience she has gained from the battlefield to the boardroom will make her an invaluable member of my team," he said. 

Sullivan is currently the top public affairs advisor to VA Secretary Bob McDonald. 

She will be taking the position over from Brent Colburn, who will be stepping down in July after serving in the administration since 2008.  

Sullivan will be the principal advisor to the defense secretary and deputy defense secretary for communication strategy, media relations, public information and community relations. 

She served as a Marine Corps operations and logistics officer, and deployed to Fallujah, Iraq in 2005 with Combat Logistics Battalion 8, according to her VA bio. 

She is also a Harvard Business School and Kennedy School graduate, and has served as one of President Obama's appointees to the American Battle Monuments Commission. Pentagon chief taps VA official for Pentagon public affairs post

The announcement follows the naming of a new Pentagon press secretary last week, former Bloomberg anchor and journalist Peter Cook. The Pentagon is also slated to create a new position for a deputy to Cook.