Desmond Thomas Doss was a United States Army corporal who served as a combat medic with an infantry company in World War II. He was twice awarded the Bronze Star Medal for actions in Guam and the Philippines. Doss further distinguished himself in the Battle of Okinawa by saving 75 men, becoming the only conscientious objector to receive the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Second World War, his life has been the subject of books, the documentary The Conscientious Objector, the 2016 film Hacksaw Ridge. Desmond Doss was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, to William Thomas Doss, a carpenter, Bertha Edward Doss, a homemaker and shoe factory worker, his mother raised him as a devout Seventh-day Adventist and instilled Sabbath-keeping, a vegetarian lifestyle in his upbringing. He grew up in the Fairview Heights area of Lynchburg, alongside his older sister Audrey and younger brother Harold. Doss attended the Park Avenue Seventh-day Adventist Church school until the eighth grade, subsequently found a job at the Lynchburg Lumber Company to support his family during the Great Depression.
Before the outbreak of World War II, Doss was employed as a joiner at a shipyard in Newport News, Virginia. Doss entered military service, despite being offered a deferment for his shipyard work, on April 1, 1942, at Camp Lee, Virginia, he was sent to Fort Jackson in South Carolina for training with the reactivated 77th Infantry Division. Meanwhile, his brother Harold served aboard the USS Lindsey. Doss refused to kill an enemy soldier or carry a weapon into combat because of his personal beliefs as a Seventh-day Adventist, he became a medic assigned to the 2nd Platoon, Company B, 1st Battalion, 307th Infantry, 77th Infantry Division. While serving with his platoon in 1944 on Guam and the Philippines, he was awarded two Bronze Star Medals with a "V" device, for exceptional valor in aiding wounded soldiers under fire. During the Battle of Okinawa, he saved the lives of 50–100 wounded infantrymen atop the area known by the 96th Division as the Maeda Escarpment or Hacksaw Ridge. Doss was wounded four times in Okinawa, was evacuated on May 21, 1945, aboard the USS Mercy.
Doss suffered a left arm fracture from a sniper's bullet and at one point had seventeen pieces of shrapnel embedded in his body. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions in Okinawa. After the war, Doss planned to continue his career in carpentry, but extensive damage to his left arm made him unable to do so. In 1946, Doss was diagnosed with tuberculosis, he underwent treatment for five and a half years – which cost him a lung and five ribs – before being discharged from the hospital in August 1951 with 90% disability. Doss continued to receive treatment from the military, but after an overdose of antibiotics rendered him deaf in 1976, he was given 100% disability. Despite the severity of his injuries, Doss managed to raise a family on a small farm in Rising Fawn, Georgia. Doss married Dorothy Pauline Schutte on August 17, 1942, they had one child, Desmond "Tommy" Doss Jr. born in 1946. Dorothy died on November 1991, from a car accident. Doss remarried on July 1993, to Frances May Duman.
After being hospitalized for difficulty breathing, Doss died on March 23, 2006, at his home in Piedmont, Alabama. He was buried on April 3, 2006, in the National Cemetery in Tennessee. Frances died three years on February 3, 2009, at the Piedmont Health Care Center in Piedmont, Alabama. Rank and organization: Private First Class, United States Army, Medical Detachment, 307th Infantry, 77th Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Urasoe Mura, Ryukyu Islands, April 29, 1945 – May 21, 1945. Entered service at: Lynchburg, Virginia Birth: Lynchburg, Virginia G. O. No.: 97, November 1, 1945. The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, March 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of The Congress the MEDAL OF HONOR toPRIVATE FIRST CLASS DESMOND T. DOSSUNITED STATES ARMYfor service as set forth in the followingCitation: Private First Class Desmond T. Doss, United States Army, Medical Detachment, 307th Infantry, 77th Infantry Division. Near Urasoe-Mura, Ryukyu Islands, 29 April – 21 May 1945.
He was a company aid man. As our troops gained the summit, a heavy concentration of artillery and machinegun fire crashed into them, inflicting 75 casualties and driving the others back. Private First Class Doss refused to seek cover and remained in the fire-swept area with the many stricken, carrying them one by one to the edge of the escarpment and there lowering them on a rope-supported litter down the face of a cliff to friendly hands. On 2 May, he exposed himself to heavy rifle and mortar fire in rescuing a wounded man 200 yards forward of the lines on the same escarpment. On 5 May, he unhesitatingly braved enemy shelling and small arms fire to assist an artillery officer, he applied bandages, moved his patient to a spot that offered protection from small-arms fire and, while artillery and mortar shells fell close by, painstakingly administered plasma. That day, when an American was wounded by fire from a cave, Private First Class Doss crawled to him where he had fallen 25 feet from the enemy position, rendered aid, carried him 100 yar
Willis Group Holdings plc is a multinational risk advisor, insurance brokerage and reinsurance brokerage company with its headquarters in the Willis Building in London. It is the world's fourth-largest insurance broker. Willis has around 400 offices in 120 countries and 18,000 employees. Willis was listed on the New York Stock Exchange before its early-2016'merger of equals' with Towers Watson. After the deal closed, the combined company began trading on the Nasdaq exchange under the symbol, WLTW; the company was founded by Henry Willis in London in 1828, operated as Henry Willis & Co. In 1898 it merged with Faber Brothers to form Willis Faber, in 1928 it merged with Dumas & Wylie to create Willis, Faber & Dumas, it was first listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1976 as Willis Faber. It expanded into the United States in 1990 when it merged with Corroon & Black to form the Willis Corroon Group. In 1998 in a leveraged buyout the Company was acquired by Trinity Acquisition on behalf of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, in 1999 the name Willis Group was adopted.
It was first listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 2001. In October 2008, Willis acquired Hilb, Rogal & Hobbs Co. one of the largest insurance and risk management intermediaries in North America and this has boosted their North American presence, as well as acquired Glencairn Limited which has augmented its Lloyd's of London Market strength. Willis announced plans in 2009 to relocate its registered office from Bermuda to Ireland, its shareholders approved the move in December 2009, the company announced on 31 December 2009, that its reorganisation has been completed and the new parent company of the Willis Group – known as Willis Group Holdings Public Limited Company – is incorporated in Ireland. On June 30, 2015, Willis Group announced it would merge with Towers Watson to create Willis Towers Watson, it was stated that the combined company operated in 120 countries, with a workforce of 39,000 employees and revenues of $8.2 billion and a value of $18 billion. The merger was concluded on 5 January 2016.
Willis moved into the Willis Building, its new London headquarters, in May 2008. The Willis Building in Ipswich, England, is one of the earliest buildings designed by Norman Foster after establishing Foster Associates. Constructed between 1970 and 1975 it is now seen as a landmark in the development of the'high tech' architectural style, it is one of the youngest buildings to be given Grade I listed building status in Britain. The 108-story Sears Tower in Chicago was renamed the Willis Tower in July 2009. Willis secured the naming rights as part of its agreement to lease 140,000 square feet of space in the 3,800,000-square-foot tower, it was the world's tallest building from 1974 until 1998, when it was surpassed by the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Willis has 400 offices in more than 100 countries. Willis Group is sponsor of The Willis Resilience Expedition, a scientific program in Antarctica to better understand our changing climate and build resilience to weather-related risk. Marsh & McLennan Companies Official website
Kenneth Ronald Berry was an American actor and singer. Berry starred on the television series F Troop, The Andy Griffith Show, Mayberry R. F. D. and Mama's Family. He appeared on Broadway in The Billy Barnes Revue, headlined as George M. Cohan in the musical George M! and provided comic relief for the medical drama Dr. Kildare, with Richard Chamberlain in the 1960s. Berry was born in Moline in Rock Island County in Northwestern Illinois, one of two children of an accountant, Darrell Berry, his wife, Bernice. Berry was of Swedish-English descent. Berry realized he wanted to be a dancer and singer at age 12, as he watched a children's dance performance during a school assembly, he dreamed of starring in movie musicals and went to the movie theater to see Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly in some of his favorite films, including Easter Parade, Royal Wedding, On the Town, Summer Stock. Berry started tap dance class and, at age 15, won a local talent competition sponsored by radio and television big band leader Horace Heidt.
Heidt asked Berry to join his traveling performance ensemble, "The Horace Heidt Youth Opportunity Program", a popular touring group. He toured the United States and Europe for 15 months with the program and singing for the public and at post-World War II United States Air Force bases overseas. Berry made lasting relationships with several of his co-cast members and Horace's son, Horace Heidt Jr. who launched a big band and radio career. After high school graduation, Berry volunteered for the United States Army, was assigned to Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, North Carolina, his first year in the Army was spent in the artillery. Berry, who always carried his tap shoes with him, worked out a routine and a few hours won the contest, he headed to New York for his television debut. Berry's second and final year in the Army was with Special Services, under Sergeant Leonard Nimoy, who encouraged Berry to go to Hollywood and pursue acting; as a part of Special Services, he toured Army posts and officers' clubs entertaining the troops, as well as visiting colleges for recruiting purposes.
Soon, another talent competition was held, the All Army Talent Competition, looking to find service personnel to appear on Ed Sullivan's Toast of the Town. Berry placed third in the "Specialty Act" category with the song "There'll Be Some Changes Made" and returned to New York City and television; the Sullivan appearance was to take place shortly. Nimoy sent telegrams to several studios and talent agents asking them to watch Berry on the show; the performance led to an offer from a screen test at Universal Studios. He signed with an agent as soon. Berry began as a contract player. Soon he was being groomed to take over for Donald O'Connor in the Francis the Talking Mule movie series. At Universal, Berry took full advantage of the studio's talent development program and under the G. I. Bill, he took jazz dance, ballet and additional acting classes; the movie musicals Berry admired had seen their heyday. Berry went on to star in the 1969 musical comedy Hello Down There — reissued as Sub a Dub Dub — as Mel Cheever, the nemesis of Tony Randall and Janet Leigh, with Denver Pyle in 1976's Guardian of the Wilderness, the story of Galen Clark, the man who created Yosemite National Park.
Berry earned broader success as a Disney star in the films Herbie Rides Again in 1974, with Helen Hayes and Stefanie Powers, The Cat from Outer Space in 1978, with Sandy Duncan and McLean Stevenson. In 1956, after being released from Universal, Berry ventured to Las Vegas where he opened for and joined Abbott and Costello in their stage act, performing sketches and song and dance routines at the Sahara Hotel and Casino. While working with Abbott and Costello, he met Dee Arlen, an actress whom he credited with getting him his first big break; this was Berry's first performance on the Las Vegas Strip. In 1957, Berry was asked by Ken Murray, a well-known vaudeville performer, to join his stage variety show The Ken Murray Blackouts; the Blackouts played to standing-room-only audiences, Berry was asked to choreograph and perform the opening number for the show when it played the Riviera hotel and casino in Las Vegas. Berry returned to Las Vegas again in the 1970s at the invitation of Andy Griffith.
Griffith, with Berry and Jerry Van Dyke, played Caesars Palace, where Berry performed song and dance numbers sandwiched by Andy and Jerry's stand-up routines. Actress Dee Arlen referred Berry for a role in the show In League with Ivy at the Cabaret Concert Theatre, a nightclub in Los Angeles. Here he met famed composer -- the play's composer. Barnes brought Berry into The Billy Barnes Revue ensemble, his next break, he performed in many of Barnes' shows in the coming years. While with Barnes, Berry worked with other performers including his future wife, Jackie Joseph, as well as Joyce Jameson, Bert Convy, Patti Regan, Ann Morgan Guilbert, Lennie Weinrib, sketch writer/director Bob Rodgers. Several cast albums were made. In November 1959, the original cast of the Broadway show was replaced two weeks after a legal dispute with the producers over a canceled performance; the cast had missed their flight from Chicago after a promotional appearance on Playboy's Penthouse and refunds had to be made to the ticket holders.
He performed in several stage shows in
Confederate States of America
The Confederate States of America referred to as the Confederacy, was an unrecognized country in North America that existed from 1861 to 1865. The Confederacy was formed by seven secessionist slave-holding states—South Carolina, Florida, Georgia and Texas—in the Lower South region of the United States, whose economy was dependent upon agriculture cotton, a plantation system that relied upon the labor of African-American slaves; each state declared its secession from the United States, which became known as the Union during the ensuing civil war, following the November 1860 election of Republican candidate Abraham Lincoln to the U. S. presidency on a platform which opposed the expansion of slavery into the western territories. Before Lincoln took office in March, a new Confederate government was established in February 1861, considered illegal by the government of the United States. States volunteered militia units and the new government hastened to form its own Confederate States Army from scratch overnight.
After the American Civil War began in April, four slave states of the Upper South—Virginia, Arkansas and North Carolina—also declared their secession and joined the Confederacy. The Confederacy accepted Missouri and Kentucky as members, although neither declared secession nor were they largely controlled by Confederate forces; the government of the United States rejected the claims of secession and considered the Confederacy illegally founded. The War began with the Confederate attack upon Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, a Union fort in the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. No foreign government recognized the Confederacy as an independent country, although Great Britain and France granted it belligerent status, which allowed Confederate agents to contract with private concerns for arms and other supplies. In early 1865, after four years of heavy fighting which led to 620,000–850,000 military deaths, all the Confederate forces surrendered and the Confederacy vanished; the war lacked a formal end.
By 1865 Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederate States of America for the duration of the civil war, lamented that the Confederacy had "disappeared". On February 22, 1862, the Confederate Constitution of seven state signatories – Mississippi, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia and Texas – replaced the Provisional Constitution of February 8, 1861, with one stating in its preamble a desire for a "permanent federal government". Four additional slave-holding states – Virginia, Arkansas and North Carolina – declared their secession and joined the Confederacy following a call by U. S. President Abraham Lincoln for troops from each state to recapture Sumter and other seized federal properties in the South. Missouri and Kentucky were represented by partisan factions adopting the forms of state governments without control of substantial territory or population in either case; the antebellum state governments in both maintained their representation in the Union. Fighting for the Confederacy were two of the "Five Civilized Tribes" – the Choctaw and the Chickasaw – in Indian Territory and a new, but uncontrolled, Confederate Territory of Arizona.
Efforts by certain factions in Maryland to secede were halted by federal imposition of martial law. A Unionist government was formed in opposition to the secessionist state government in Richmond and administered the western parts of Virginia, occupied by Federal troops; the Restored Government recognized the new state of West Virginia, admitted to the Union during the war on June 20, 1863, re-located to Alexandria for the rest of the war. Confederate control over its claimed territory and population in congressional districts shrank from 73% to 34% during the course of the American Civil War due to the Union's successful overland campaigns, its control of the inland waterways into the South, its blockade of the southern coast. With the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, the Union made abolition of slavery a war goal; as Union forces moved southward, large numbers of plantation slaves were freed. Many joined the Union lines, enrolling in service as soldiers and laborers; the most notable advance was Sherman's "March to the Sea" in late 1864.
Much of the Confederacy's infrastructure was destroyed, including telegraphs and bridges. Plantations in the path of Sherman's forces were damaged. Internal movement became difficult for Southerners, weakening the economy and limiting army mobility; these losses created an insurmountable disadvantage in men and finance. Public support for Confederate President Jefferson Davis's administration eroded over time due to repeated military reverses, economic hardships, allegations of autocratic government. After four years of campaigning, Richmond was captured by Union forces in April 1865. A few days General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Union General Ulysses S. Grant signalling the collapse of the Confederacy. President Davis was captured on May 10, 1865, jailed in preparation for a treason trial, never held; the initial Confederacy was established in the Montgomery Convention in February 1861 by seven states (South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a war fought in the United States from 1861 to 1865, between the North and the South. The Civil War is the most studied and written about episode in U. S. history. As a result of the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of black people, war broke out in April 1861 when secessionist forces attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina shortly after Abraham Lincoln had been inaugurated as the President of the United States; the loyalists of the Union in the North proclaimed support for the Constitution. They faced secessionists of the Confederate States in the South, who advocated for states' rights to uphold slavery. Among the 34 U. S. states in February 1861, secessionist partisans in seven Southern slave states declared state secessions from the country and unveiled their defiant formation of a Confederate States of America in rebellion against the U. S. Constitutional government; the Confederacy grew to control over half the territory in eleven states, it claimed the additional states of Kentucky and Missouri by assertions from exiled native secessionists without territory or population.
These were given full representation in the Confederate Congress throughout the Civil War. The two remaining slave holding states of Delaware and Maryland were invited to join the Confederacy, but nothing substantial developed; the Confederate States was never diplomatically recognized by the government of the United States or by that of any foreign country. The states that remained loyal to the U. S. were known as the Union. The Union and the Confederacy raised volunteer and conscription armies that fought in the South over the course of four years. Intense combat left 620,000 to 750,000 people dead, more than the number of U. S. military deaths in all other wars combined. The war ended when General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Battle of Appomattox Court House. Confederate generals throughout the southern states followed suit. Much of the South's infrastructure was destroyed the transportation systems; the Confederacy collapsed, slavery was abolished, four million black slaves were freed.
During the Reconstruction Era that followed the war, national unity was restored, the national government expanded its power, civil rights were granted to freed black slaves through amendments to the Constitution and federal legislation. In the 1860 presidential election, led by Abraham Lincoln, supported banning slavery in all the U. S. territories. The Southern states viewed this as a violation of their constitutional rights and as the first step in a grander Republican plan to abolish slavery; the three pro-Union candidates together received an overwhelming 82% majority of the votes cast nationally: Republican Lincoln's votes centered in the north, Democrat Stephen A. Douglas' votes were distributed nationally and Constitutional Unionist John Bell's votes centered in Tennessee and Virginia; the Republican Party, dominant in the North, secured a plurality of the popular votes and a majority of the electoral votes nationally. He was the first Republican Party candidate to win the presidency.
However, before his inauguration, seven slave states with cotton-based economies declared secession and formed the Confederacy. The first six to declare secession had the highest proportions of slaves in their populations, with an average of 49 percent. Of those states whose legislatures resolved for secession, the first seven voted with split majorities for unionist candidates Douglas and Bell, or with sizable minorities for those unionists. Of these, only Texas held a referendum on secession. Eight remaining slave states continued to reject calls for secession. Outgoing Democratic President James Buchanan and the incoming Republicans rejected secession as illegal. Lincoln's March 4, 1861, inaugural address declared that his administration would not initiate a civil war. Speaking directly to the "Southern States", he attempted to calm their fears of any threats to slavery, reaffirming, "I have no purpose, directly or indirectly to interfere with the institution of slavery in the United States where it exists.
I believe I have no lawful right to do so, I have no inclination to do so." After Confederate forces seized numerous federal forts within territory claimed by the Confederacy, efforts at compromise failed and both sides prepared for war. The Confederates assumed that European countries were so dependent on "King Cotton" that they would intervene, but none did, none recognized the new Confederate States of America. Hostilities began on April 1861, when Confederate forces fired upon Fort Sumter. While in the Western Theater the Union made significant permanent gains, in the Eastern Theater, the battle was inconclusive during 1861–1862. In September 1862, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which made ending slavery a war goal. To the west, by summer 1862 the Union destroyed the Confederate river navy much of its western armies, seized New Orleans; the successful 1863 Union siege of Vicksburg split the Confederacy in two at the Mississippi River. In 1863, Robert E. Lee's Confederate incursion north ended at the Battle of Gettysburg.
Western successes led to Ulysses S. Grant's command of all Union armies in 1864. Inflicting an ever-tightening naval blockade of Confederate ports, the Union marshaled the resources and manpower to attack the Confederacy from all directions, leading to the fall of Atlanta to William T. Sherman and his march to th
World War I
World War I known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history, it is one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide. On 28 June 1914, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb Yugoslav nationalist, assassinated the Austro-Hungarian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, leading to the July Crisis. In response, on 23 July Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia. Serbia's reply failed to satisfy the Austrians, the two moved to a war footing. A network of interlocking alliances enlarged the crisis from a bilateral issue in the Balkans to one involving most of Europe.
By July 1914, the great powers of Europe were divided into two coalitions: the Triple Entente—consisting of France and Britain—and the Triple Alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy. Russia felt it necessary to back Serbia and, after Austria-Hungary shelled the Serbian capital of Belgrade on the 28th, partial mobilisation was approved. General Russian mobilisation was announced on the evening of 30 July; when Russia failed to comply, Germany declared war on 1 August in support of Austria-Hungary, with Austria-Hungary following suit on 6th. German strategy for a war on two fronts against France and Russia was to concentrate the bulk of its army in the West to defeat France within four weeks shift forces to the East before Russia could mobilise. On 2 August, Germany demanded free passage through Belgium, an essential element in achieving a quick victory over France; when this was refused, German forces invaded Belgium on 3 August and declared war on France the same day. On 12 August and France declared war on Austria-Hungary.
In November 1914, the Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of the Alliance, opening fronts in the Caucasus and the Sinai Peninsula. The war was fought in and drew upon each power's colonial empire as well, spreading the conflict to Africa and across the globe; the Entente and its allies would become known as the Allied Powers, while the grouping of Austria-Hungary and their allies would become known as the Central Powers. The German advance into France was halted at the Battle of the Marne and by the end of 1914, the Western Front settled into a battle of attrition, marked by a long series of trench lines that changed little until 1917. In 1915, Italy opened a front in the Alps. Bulgaria joined the Central Powers in 1915 and Greece joined the Allies in 1917, expanding the war in the Balkans; the United States remained neutral, although by doing nothing to prevent the Allies from procuring American supplies whilst the Allied blockade prevented the Germans from doing the same the U. S. became an important supplier of war material to the Allies.
After the sinking of American merchant ships by German submarines, the revelation that the Germans were trying to incite Mexico to make war on the United States, the U. S. declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917. Trained American forces would not begin arriving at the front in large numbers until mid-1918, but the American Expeditionary Force would reach some two million troops. Though Serbia was defeated in 1915, Romania joined the Allied Powers in 1916 only to be defeated in 1917, none of the great powers were knocked out of the war until 1918; the 1917 February Revolution in Russia replaced the Tsarist autocracy with the Provisional Government, but continuing discontent at the cost of the war led to the October Revolution, the creation of the Soviet Socialist Republic, the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk by the new government in March 1918, ending Russia's involvement in the war. This allowed the transfer of large numbers of German troops from the East to the Western Front, resulting in the German March 1918 Offensive.
This offensive was successful, but the Allies rallied and drove the Germans back in their Hundred Days Offensive. Bulgaria was the first Central Power to sign an armistice—the Armistice of Salonica on 29 September 1918. On 30 October, the Ottoman Empire capitulated. On 4 November, the Austro-Hungarian empire agreed to the Armistice of Villa Giusti after being decisively defeated by Italy in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto. With its allies defeated, revolution at home, the military no longer willing to fight, Kaiser Wilhelm abdicated on 9 November and Germany signed an armistice on 11 November 1918. World War I was a significant turning point in the political, cultural and social climate of the world; the war and its immediate aftermath sparked numerous uprisings. The Big Four (Britain, the United States, It
United States Secretary of the Air Force
The Secretary of the Air Force is the head of the Department of the Air Force, a component organization within the United States Department of Defense. The Secretary of the Air Force is appointed from civilian life by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate; the Secretary reports to the Secretary of Defense and/or the Deputy Secretary of Defense, is by statute responsible for and has the authority to conduct all the affairs of the Department of the Air Force. The Secretary works with his or her civilian deputy, the Under Secretary of the Air Force; the first Secretary of the Air Force, Stuart Symington, was sworn in on 18 September 1947 upon the re-organization of the Army Air Forces into a military department and a military service of its own, independent of the War Department/Army, with the enactment of the National Security Act. On 16 May 2017, Heather Wilson was sworn in as the next Secretary of the Air Force. Wilson was nominated by President Donald Trump on 23 January 2017, confirmed by the U.
S. Senate on 8 May 2017. On 9 March 2019, Secretary Wilson announced her resignation which will take effect on 31 May 2019; the Secretary is the head of the Department of the Air Force, analogous to that of a chief executive officer of a corporation. The Department of the Air Force is defined as a Military Department, it is not limited to the Washington headquarter staffs, rather it is an entity which includes all the components of the United States Air Force and the Air National Guard: The term'department', when used with respect to a military department, means the executive part of the department and all field headquarters, reserve components, installations and functions under the control or supervision of the Secretary of the department. The exclusive responsibilities of the Secretary of the Air Force are enumerated in Title 10 Section 9013 of the United States Code, they are not limited to: Recruiting. Organizing. Supplying. Equipping. Training. Servicing. Mobilizing. Demobilizing. Administering.
Maintaining. The construction and repair of military equipment; the construction and repair of buildings and utilities and the acquisition of real property and interests in real property necessary to carry out the responsibilities specified in this section. By direction of the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of the Air Force assigns military units of the Department of the Air Force, other than those who carry out the functions listed in 10 USC 8013, to the Unified and Specified Combatant Commands to perform missions assigned to those commands. Air Force units while assigned to Combatant Commands may only be reassigned by authority of the Secretary of Defense. However, the chain of command for Air Force units for other purposes than the operational direction goes from the President to the Secretary of Defense to the Secretary of the Air Force to the Commanders of Air Force Commands. Air Force Officers have to report on any matter to the Secretary, or the Secretary's designate, when requested.
The Secretary has the authority to detail, prescribe the duties, to assign air force service members and civilian employees, may change the title of any activity not statutorily designated. The Secretary has several responsibilities under the Uniform Code of Military Justice with respect to Air Force service members, including to authority to convene General Courts Martial and to commute sentences; the Secretary of the Air Force may be assigned additional responsibilities by the President or the Secretary of Defense, e.g. the Secretary is designated as the "DoD Executive Agent for Space", as such:... shall develop and integrate plans and programs for space systems and the acquisition of DoD Space Major Defense Acquisition Programs to provide operational space force capabilities to ensure the United States has the space power to achieve its national security objectives. The Secretary of the Air Force's principal staff element, the Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, has responsibility for acquisition and auditing, comptroller issues, inspector general matters, legislative affairs, public affairs within the Department of the Air Force.
The Office of the Secretary of the Air Force is one of the Department of the Air Force's two headquarter staffs at the seat of government, the other one is the Air Staff. The Office of the Secretary of the Air Force is composed of: Under Secretary of the Air Force The Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for International Affairs The Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Space Programs Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Financial Management and Comptroller Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations and Logistics Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Manpower and Reserve Affairs General Counsel of the Department of the Air Force Inspector General of the Air Force Chief of Legislative Liaison Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Air Force Auditor General of the Department of the Air Force Air Reserve Forces Policy Committee Air Force Cross Department of the Air Force Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service Title 10 United States Code Subtitle A – General Military Law CHAPTER 1 – DEFINITIONS § 101.
Definitions Subtitle D – Air Force CHAPTER 6 – COMBATANT COMMANDERS § 162. Combatant command: assigned forces.