President Biden has nominated Lt. Gen. B. Chance Saltzman to be the next chief of space operations, the Pentagon announced Thursday.
If confirmed by the Senate, he would become a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Space Force’s top officer as the service tackles major challenges such as defending U.S. space assets against threats posed by advanced adversaries; acquiring new communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities; and pursuing the Pentagon’s Joint All-Domain Command and Control (JADC2) concept.
Saltzman is currently serving as the deputy chief of space operations for operations, cyber and nuclear. where he oversees operations, intelligence, sustainment, cyber, and nuclear issues for the Space Force.
If confirmed by the Senate, he would become just the second-ever chief of space operations, succeeding Gen. John “Jay” Raymond, who became the first person to hold the position after the Space Force was established as a separate branch of the military in 2019.
Saltzman has a long history of serving in space-related positions at the Defense Department during his career, including Chief , Combat Plans Division, Joint Space Operations Center; Chief, Combat Operations Division, Joint Space Operations Center; Commander, 614th Space Operations Squadron; Commander, 1st Space Control Squadron; Commander, 460th Operations Group; Commander, Aerospace Data Facility; Deputy Director, Plans and Programs, Headquarters Air Force Space Command; Executive Officer to the Commander, Air Force Space Command; and satellite operator for the National Reconnaissance Office, according to his DOD bio.
His confirmation hearing has not yet been scheduled.