The United States of America Senate has confirmed General Charles Q. Brown as the first African American Air Force chief.
The confirmation also makes Brown the second African American officer to sit on the Joint Chiefs of Staff since Chairman Gen. Colin Powell.
General Brown, a four-star general and former combat pilot, is currently the commander of Pacific Air Forces, a command which supports approximately 46,000 airmen serving mainly in South Korea, Japan, Guam, Hawaii, and Alaska.
It was presided over by Vice President Mike Pence on historic 98-0 vote that came in the wake of the nationwide protests over police brutality and racial injustice following the death of George Floyd.
Brown was commissioned into the Air Force in 1984 as a distinguished graduate of Texas Tech University’s ROTC program. According to his biography, he has commanded a fighter squadron, the U.S. Air Force Weapons School, two fighter wings, and U.S. Air Forces Central Command and served as the deputy commander of U.S. Central Command. He has more than 2,900 flying hours, including 130 combat hours.
President Donald Trump, who nominated Brown in March, hailed the general in a statement via his Twitter page.
“My decision to appoint @usairforce General Charles Brown as the USA’s first-ever African American military service chief has now been approved by the Senate,” Trump said, though the tweet came before the confirmation vote. “A historic day for America! Excited to work even more closely with Gen. Brown, who is a Patriot and Great Leader!”
Brown, sometimes known by his call sign “CQ,” will be in charge from the outgoing Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein, who is set to retire on June 30.