New Navy secretary brings business background to the table

Published: Nov. 14, 2017 at 9:44 PM CST
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THE PENTAGON (Gray DC) -- Richard V. Spencer’s new career comes with a wide scope of responsibilities.

“It’s an awesome job in the way that it’s truly awesome," explained Spencer. “You see sailors and Marines graduating from boot camp, and then you fly to Dover to see a dignified transfer of remains.”

It’s the mission Spencer chose to accept when he was sworn in as the 76th secretary of the Navy in August.

As secretary of the Navy, Spencer also oversees the Marine Corps. Spencer himself served in the Marines as a H-46 helicopter pilot -- a job that took him around the world. After that, Spencer worked on Wall Street. Then, he moved to Wyoming to start his own business.

Spencer explained how his vast background prepared him for his new job.

“For the past eight years, when I was living out in Wyoming, I was on the Defense Business Board, which is a group of CEOs that advise the Secretary of Defense on various matters," he said.

Now, Spencer is doing the same thing from inside the Pentagon.

“My job…is to man, equip, train, supply, and deliver, amongst other things. But if you look at that, that’s a business," he explained.

President Donald Trump is calling for a $52 billion increase in Defense spending, but the final amount is ultimately up to lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Building new ships, planes, and submarines takes money, but he’s committed to reforming how to spend it.

“At the end of the day, my fiduciary responsibility is to buy the best I can at the best value for the taxpayer," said Spencer.

Just three months on the job, and Spencer has a jam-packed schedule, including Thanksgiving and Christmas visits with the troops.

To watch Spencer's full interview with Gray Television Washington News Bureau's Ted Fioraliso, click on the video box at the top of the page.

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