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Pentagon to Announce Transition Plan as Acquisition Office Faces Vacancies

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The Department of Defense is facing vacancies within its office focused on weapons procurement and modernization efforts, Politico reported Friday.

A spokesperson for DOD said Stacy Cummings, who is performing the duties of undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, and is also a 2021 Wash100 Award recipient, is set to step down from her post in the coming weeks.

“Succession plans are in place to ensure continuity of operations and support of the Secretary’s priorities," Jessica Maxwell, a spokesperson for the Pentagon, said in a statement. "We will be announcing the transition plan in the coming weeks.”

Michael Brown, director of the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), withdrew his name from consideration for the role of acquisitions chief at the Pentagon citing an ongoing investigation into hiring practices at DIU.

Defense News reported that DOD has only one nominee within its acquisitions office. Deborah Rosenblum, the administration’s pick for the role of assistant secretary for nuclear, chemical and biological defense programs at the Pentagon, is awaiting Senate confirmation. 

Some of the unfilled posts within the office are the deputy undersecretary for acquisition and sustainment, assistant secretary for industrial base policy and assistant secretary for sustainment.

According to Politico, the Biden administration has yet to announce nominees for 27 DOD positions that require Senate confirmation. Twenty nominees are still awaiting confirmation in the upper chamber.