Patrick Shanahan takes over Pentagon

Patrick Shanahan takes over Pentagon

Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, a former Boeing executive, will take charge of the Pentagon on January 1 in the wake of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis' resignation.

U.S. President Donald Trump announced Shanahan’s shift to the post of acting defense secretary on Twitter: "I am pleased to announce that our very talented Deputy Secretary of Defense, Patrick Shanahan, will assume the title of Acting Secretary of Defense starting January 1, 2019. Patrick has a long list of accomplishments while serving as Deputy, & previously Boeing. He will be great!"

Shanahan, 56, who served as Mattis’s deputy, assumed his role as deputy in July 2017. Prior to that, he worked as a Boeing executive, according to the Department of Defense, where he ran some of the company's most controversial weapons programs.

While at Boeing, Shanahan ran its missile defense business, helping to create an airborne antimissile laser, but the project was scrapped by the Pentagon, according to The New York Times. He also worked on a ground-based missile defense system.

"The Pentagon should focus on outcomes and outputs — our performance. This focus on performance should drive us to field unmatched lethality, execute on our modernization plans and achieve this affordably," Shanahan told Defense News.