The U.S. Senate on Tuesday voted to confirm retired Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz to head the country’s beleaguered nuclear-arms agency.
Klotz, who formerly led the Air Force Global Strike Command, was confirmed by a voice vote to the position of under secretary of Energy for nuclear security and administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration, the Washington Post reported.
The Senate Armed Services Committee approved Klotz’s nomination in January. He was first tapped by the White House for the NNSA post in August.
The semiautonomous Energy Department branch has not had a permanent administrator since the former head, Thomas D’Agostino, stepped down in January 2013 amid concerns the agency was mismanaging the planning around key new nuclear material processing facilities and had grown lax about security at weapon sites.
“Lt. Gen. Klotz’s confirmation comes at a critical point for the National Nuclear Security Administration,” Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said in a press release. “His breadth of military and national security leadership experience makes him uniquely suited to lead the NNSA, fulfilling its commitments to the management and security of the nation’s nuclear weapons.”
In addition to standing up and leading Global Strike Command, which oversees the U.S. arsenal of heavy bombers and land-based nuclear missiles, Klotz represented the White House in negotiations with Russia that eventually produced the 2002 Moscow Treaty.
Since retiring from the military, Klotz has been a senior fellow for strategic studies and arms control at the Council on Foreign Relations.
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