Senate committee approves seven Pentagon nominees

WASHINGTON Tue May 15, 2012 3:47pm EDT

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday approved the nominations of seven civilians for senior jobs at the Defense Department, including Frank Kendall to be the Pentagon's chief weapons buyer.

The committee said it established a quorum on Tuesday afternoon and approved the nominations, which must still be approved by the full Senate.

The nominations included Kendall, the former No. 2 Pentagon arms buyer who is already serving in the job on an acting basis; James Miller to become undersecretary of defense for policy; and Erin Conaton to be undersecretary for personnel and readiness.

Other nominations approved by the committee were Kathleen Hicks to be principal deputy undersecretary for defense for policy; Jessica Lynn Wright to be assistant secretary of defense for reserve affairs; Derek Chollet to be assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs; and Heidi Shyu to be assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition.

(Reporting By Andrea Shalal-Esa; Editing by Gary Hill)

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