In recognition of Black History Month, Syracuse University’s D’Aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) is highlighting the critical gap in understanding the experiences of Black and African American service members, especially in their transition from military to civilian…
Faculty Members Reflect on Former Defense Secretary Ash Carter’s Legacy
Former defense secretary Ashton Carter’s life and legacy will not be forgotten. With the news of his passing, military experts at Syracuse University shared their thoughts to pay tribute to Carter and his family. Please see their reflections below. If you are interested in an interview, please reach out to Vanessa Marquette, Media Relations Specialist, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sean O’Keefe, former secretary of the Navy and University Professor at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School:
“Ash Carter’s measured tone, balanced perspective, and insight will be sorely missed as the current debate over the nation’s security continues. Ash was a remarkable, talented fellow, always tolerant of different points of view, and yet very decisive once he gathered all perspectives to frame his view. Despite his many accomplishments, there was not a hint of arrogance, always a modest characterization of his influence, and he was prompt to attribute success to the contribution of others.
Ash had the uncommon skill to merge the intellectual horsepower of his scholarly, academic insights with pragmatic instincts to yield practitioner solutions. I was fortunate to work with him on several projects over the last three decades, co-taught a few classes with him, and collaborated on a book with him along with multiple contributors. Whatever differences we had in policy debates never diminished the common ground we agreed on. His skill translated on various public programs we worked on together with seemingly different objectives, yet he found mutual outcomes we could work toward. In that regard he was among the finest public servants I’ve ever been privileged to work with.
He was a terrific colleague and valued friend that I will miss, but always be grateful and blessed to have known. My deepest condolences and sympathy to his soulmate and wife Stephanie, and to his family for their untimely and tragic loss.” Read Sean’s biography here.
Retired Army Lt. Col. Beth Kubala, teaching professor and executive director of the Betty and Michael D. Wohl Veterans Legal Clinic at the Syracuse University College of Law:
“As a woman who served over twenty years in the Army, the former Secretary of Defense made a direct positive impact on the military’s gender gap by opening all military combat positions to women. During his tenure as the Secretary of Defense, women service members found themselves deployed to combat zones yet unable to actually fill those combat assignments. His forward-thinking actions in lifting the ban on women in combat opened doors and opportunities that women have not only embraced but thrived. I’m personally thrilled to look across campus and see young women in our Syracuse University ROTC programs graduate and fill the ranks of the combat arms.” Read Beth’s biography here.