The Senate has approved Sue Payton as the new Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition. President Bush made the nomination in April, but Payton, who is currently Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Advanced Systems and Concepts, did not appear before the Senate Armed Services Committee until July 18. The full Senate confirmed Payton on July 21.
The Air Force will begin its 71st annual Operation Christmas Drop on Dec. 4. The weeklong exercise is a yearly tradition that delivers supplies such as food, fishing equipment, school books, and clothes to remote islands in the Pacific. It is the longest-running Department of Defense humanitarian mission.