Michael Bloomberg to head Defense Innovation Board
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is expected to serve as chair of the Defense Department’s Defense Innovation Board.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin nominated Bloomberg to “leverage his experience and strategic insights on innovation, business and public service,” Pentagon press secretary John Kirby told reporters on Wednesday.
Kirby added that Bloomberg will bring “a wealth of experience in technology innovation, business and government to the Defense Innovation Board.”
“His leadership will be critical to ensuring the department has access to the best and brightest minds in science, technology and innovation through the team of diverse experts that he will lead as chair of that board,” Kirby said.
“And obviously the secretary is very grateful that Mr. Bloomberg was willing to take this additional responsibility on and very grateful that he’s willing to serve in that capacity,” he continued.
The Defense Innovation Board is an advisory board that was established in 2016 to provide the department with recommendations on emerging technologies and innovative approaches to development.
Bloomberg, a three-term mayor of New York City and founder of the media company bearing his name, is estimated by Forbes to be worth $70 billion.
He ran in the 2020 presidential primary race as a Democrat, joining the race in 2019 and dropping out in March 2020. When he dropped out, he endorsed then-candidate Joe Biden.
“Innovation and adaptability are absolutely critical at any large organization, and there is no organization bigger or more complex than the Department of Defense,” Bloomberg said in a statement. “I’m honored to work with Secretary Austin, Deputy Secretary [Kathleen] Hicks, other senior Defense Department leaders and innovators from government and business to help bring new ideas and outside perspective that can help protect Americans and our values, interests, and allies around the world.”
— Updated at 3:34 p.m.
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