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Youngkin appoints Crenshaw, Gade to posts serving veterans

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Daniel Gade, the GOP candidate for U.S. Senate, talks to the news media at his Richmond campaign headquarters, Nov. 3, 2020.

Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin on Tuesday named two officials to lead the administration’s work on veteran services, including a new secretary of veterans and defense affairs, Craig Crenshaw.

Crenshaw is a retired U.S. Marine Corps major general, who spent much of his career in the corps in high-ranking logistics roles.

Youngkin also named Daniel Gade as his next commissioner of the department of veterans services. Gade retired from the U.S. Army as a lieutenant colonel. While serving in Iraq in 2005, Gade was wounded and his right leg was amputated as a result.

He unsuccessfully challenged Democratic Sen. Mark Warner for his seat in 2020.

“Craig and Dan share my vision for making Virginia the best place for our military heroes to pursue the next chapter of their lives,” Youngkin said in a statement. “They share my commitment to ensure Virginia is competing with neighboring states when it comes to veterans benefits and tax treatment.”

Crenshaw is the fourth person named to Youngkin’s Cabinet as the governor-elect gears up to take office Jan. 15. Key roles like the state’s future health and public safety secretaries remain unfilled.

Youngkin has so far named his picks for education, finance and commerce—in line with the issues he focused on during his campaign.

On Monday, Younkin named Richmond lawyer Richard Cullen as his counsel and his transition leader Jeff Goettman as his chief of staff, among other administration staff.

As a Marine, Crenshaw served as senior executive of logistics and supply chain management, director of manpower management, and commanding general and director of logistics plans and policy.

Crenshaw also served as the vice director for logistics at the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Barack Obama’s administration. Crenshaw is currently the president of Claxton Logistics Services, a military logistics contractor.

Crenshaw is the first person of color named to Youngkin’s Cabinet. Crenshaw is facing confirmation by the General Assembly.

Gade, a North Dakota native, joined the U.S. Army at 17. After the amputation of his leg, Gade declined to be discharged from the military, instead advising the administrations of Presidents George W. Bush, Obama and Donald Trump on issues affecting veterans.

Gade recently taught public policy at American University as an adjunct.

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