June 23, 2021

Duckworth Chairs SASC Airland Subcommittee Hearing on Air Force Modernization


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Chair of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) Airland Subcommittee, led a subcommittee hearing on modernization programs in the Air Force’s Defense Authorization Request for Fiscal Year 2022. Witnesses included the Military Deputy in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition Lieutenant General Duke Z. Richardson, USAF Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Programs Lieutenant General David S. Nahom and USAF Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Lieutenant General Joseph T. Guastella. Video of the Senator’s opening remarks can be found here.

“In an effort to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars, the Air Force has been particularly aggressive in implementing accelerated acquisition authorities, including for major defense acquisition programs,” Duckworth said. “Congress has given DoD these new authorities, and it is Congress’ job to oversee the Department and ensure that the Department uses its authorities to pursue these modernization programs in a more efficient and effective manner.”

“Our witnesses this afternoon face huge challenges as they strive to balance the need to support ongoing operations and sustain readiness with the need to modernize and keep the technological edge so critical to successful military operations,” Duckworth continued. “There is no ignoring the fact that inter-state strategic competition with increasingly capable adversaries is a primary U.S. national security concern”

Last week, Duckworth also chaired a SASC Airland Subcommittee hearing on Army modernization programs. Duckworth was one of the first handful of Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom. She served in the Reserve Forces for 23 years before retiring from military service in 2014 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. She served on the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) during her four years serving in the U.S. House of Representatives.