The White House said on Dec. 13 that President Biden is nominating Senate staffer Erik Raven to be the Under Secretary of the Navy, the second highest civilian position.

Raven currently serves as the majority clerk of the Senate Defense Appropriations subcommittee. He has served the committee since 2007 and earlier served as national security adviser and legislative director to former Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), fellow to former Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), and in several positions for Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).

Raven is the first permanent nominee for the position of the Biden administration.

Thomas Modly was the last person confirmed by the Senate for the position, in the Trump administration. He resigned last year amid criticism of his removal of the commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) while serving as Acting Secretary of the Navy (Defense Daily, April 8, 2020).

Modly was in that position after former Navy Secretary Richard Spencer was forced to resign over the handling of the Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher case (Defense Daily, Nov. 25, 2019).

Since then, various officials have served as the second highest Navy civilian on an acting basis.

In February, the Navy designated former Navy acquisition chief James Geurts as performing the duties of the undersecretary of the Navy (Defense Daily, Feb. 4).

He then retired from government service in August after the Senate moved to confirm current Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro (Defense Daily, Aug. 4).

Since August, Meredith Berger has been performing the duties of the Under Secretary of the Navy. Earlier that month, Berger was confirmed as Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations & Environment.