Nice Is Good, But Can VA Deputy Secretary Nominee Be Mean When Needed?

Clean up on aisle 4… I mean at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

It appears the prior deputy secretary Donald Remy left a mountain of messes to clean up for the next deputy secretary, whoever it is.

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When first confirmed, Remy promised to fix the rollout problems plaguing the electronic health record (EHR) modernization being completed by the Oracle-Cerner $16 billion contract vehicle.

He was so confident in his abilities, likely after managing the NCAA approach to the Penn State scandals, that he publicly boasted he wanted to see “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” from within VA, not just the fluffy bunny stuff.

Unfortunately for veterans, the rollout of the EHR upgrade has been marred by scandal and controversy. Remy resigned two weeks prior to VA announcing it would permanently hold continued rollout of the system – now presently in operation at only five agency facilities.

Apparently, there was too much “Bad” and “Ugly” to justify staying in the position.

Not to be undone, VA also has another brewing controversy in its use of the VIEWS (short for VA Integrated Enterprise Workflow Solution) system of record using Salesforce software. The Office of Special Counsel has ordered VA to investigate what could be the largest violation of privacy rights in modern VA history.

The VIEWS scandal was reported to VA chief of staff Tanya Bradsher last year, but privacy violating whistleblower and veteran document sharing has not been resolved. Congress cannot seem to figure out how agency leaders are circumventing investigations.

Ahem. The data is all available in VIEWS. It is not being properly protected.

And that’s just two scandals.

Want more?

Hey, Joe, Get Cleaned Up For The Election

To clean up in time for the 2024 election cycle, the Biden Administration is stacking it with former National Security Council personnel from the Obama Administration.

As the politico election favors for nominations into key positions in the administration have rotated through, we now see Biden position his senior advisors into key spots, and some of these individuals were in key positions during the Obama Administration in the National Security Council.

That may make sense to some; these appointees know where the skeletons are buried.

However, more scandals emerged under the Obama Administration than any prior administration leading to its massive privatization.

You may recall the wait list scandal that surfaced in Phoenix, where veterans died while waiting on a wait list for care, and the Obama Administration moved swiftly to whitewash the scandal. Congress moved swiftly to approve the privatization of more VA health services as the fix.

Few things seem clearer than the Biden Administration’s preference for its National Security Council (NSC) alumni serving under VA Secretary Denis McDonough. McDonough was the chief of staff of the NSC before serving as the chief of staff in the White House.

One such recruit is the career military-trained public affairs officer (i.e., government propagandist) Tanya Bradsher. She served as a public affairs officer through the end of her career in the Army, which included work at the Office of Detainee Affairs (Gitmo “War on Terror” suspects/prisoners) leading up to serving in the same capacity for the White House National Security Council.

Bradsher glided into the role of chief of staff at VA with limited leadership experience based on the reported preference of McDonough, her former boss under the Obama Administration.

She is now being prepped in the press to ascend to the top #2 deputy secretary role with the potential for securing the top slot if McDonough resigns before the 2024 election.

Military Times Runs Interference

Normally, I appreciate Leo Shane at Military Times’s coverage on VA matters. However, for this nominee, his articles take an obvious slant where the most recent article reads like it was written by a PR firm, not Shane.

Much of his coverage focuses on the historic nature of her nomination. It also focuses on her civility, “someone known to get things done quickly without leaving bruised egos in her wake.”

But can she stand up to special interests, corporations, or unions who sometimes pursue interests that run contrary to the needs of veterans?

According to Leo Shane, a reporter for Military Times:

Now the Army veteran is set to step into a more visible — and historic — role. Last month, President Joe Biden nominated her to serve as the next deputy secretary for VA, the second highest post at the department with the second-largest budget in all of federal government. If confirmed, she’ll be the first woman to hold the role full time; three others have served as acting deputies. Bradsher, who is Black, would also be the first woman of color to ever hold the post.

And if VA Secretary Denis McDonough opts to step down from his leadership post before the 2024 presidential election, Bradsher would step in as the first woman ever to oversee the country’s veterans support programs, a moment nearly 100 years in the making.

Remy, likewise, apparently likes her nomination based on Shane’s reporting:

Remy said he thinks Bradsher’s most valuable experience for the new role will be Bradsher’s own background as a veteran and military family member. “She knows the issues to keep her eyes on, because she has lived them.”

Last month, Shane included unusual commentary in his prior reporting on the subject of Bradsher’s nomination:

Bradsher’s historic nomination could face opposition in the Senate not because of her resume but because of objections from Republican lawmakers over unrelated issues. Last month, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, placed a hold on Joshua Jacobs, the White House’s nominee to serve as VA Under Secretary of Benefits, over complaints he had about department personnel issues and unanswered information requests.

Despite the lack of substantive leadership, Shane tossed some shade in the direction of Sen Grassley for his oversight efforts while arguing any opposition could not be based on her resume.

A review of what could be called a resume shows no experience leading any organization or company like a chief executive officer or executive director. Not one entry.

I addressed Jacobs’ confirmation last month, where Senate staffers failed to include evidence and answers from Jacobs that Sen. Grassley felt lacked veracity. Grassley said the “evasive answers” required more time to review.

RELATED: Joshua Jacobs Ethics Hall Pass

There, from January 2023 to April 2023, the Biden Administration put Jacobs forward as a nominee for his senior advisor role despite his limited experience leading an agency as large as the Veterans Benefits Administration.

At the time, individuals like Sen. Chuck Schumer supported Jacobs’ nomination citing success in supporting the PACT Act for six months in an acting capacity. Jacobs was confirmed after it was revealed opposition data on Jacobs was not circulated amongst the US Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs.

One month later, what was touted as a success is coming full circle as a major problem where wait times for benefits claims have exploded into a backlog.

That same month, April 2023, VA announced the Biden Administration’s selection of Tanya Bradsher as deputy secretary despite no experience leading an organization or company as a top executive.

Seems legit.

Remy says Bradsher’s most valuable past experience is her own background as a veteran and military family member. So, let’s take a look at her military experience.

Bradsher is a retired Lt. Colonel, married to a retired Colonel, who served as a chief propagandist for the White House National Security Council and Office of Detainee Affairs while serving at the Pentagon.

Personally, I would not characterize her experience in the military or since as typical of what most veterans experience, especially if that person is a former enlisted airman, soldier, sailor, and whatever they call Space Force people these days.

Bradsher Work Experience Extrapolated

I did a little digging to collect what we could about Bradsher’s relevant background per Remy’s recommendation. We know she served in the US Army until retiring in 2013 in a public affairs capacity, and her subsequent work after retirement is largely public affairs except for 3 years in two different chiefs of staff positions.

Despite not having a typical experience in the military, or since, McDonough no doubt thinks she is the best person for the position who has worked under his leadership for six years since 2011 when he ran the NSC and then the White House.

Though, as I’ve mentioned before in other articles, that work period under McDonough deserves scrutiny.

Her work in public affairs under McDonough included his management of multiple VA scandals that emerged in 2014, including incredulous whistleblower retaliation and waitlist scandal deaths of veterans.

Then Congressman Jeff Miller called VA the most corrupt agency in the federal government. Senate members should ask questions about how the White House was engaged or not engaged in managing the clean-up of those scandals.

A quick down and dirty on Bradsher based on available information using the functional description, not the precise agency description:

  • US Army Enlisted (1993-1994)
  • US Army in various roles (1994-2001)
  • Public Affairs officer for the Joint Chiefs of Staff (Army) (2001-2003)
  • Public Affairs officer for the US Army (2003-2009)
  • Public Affairs officer for the Office of the Secretary of Defense including its Office of Detention for Gitmo (Army) (2009-2011)
  • Public Affairs officer for National Security Council (2011-2013) (Army)
  • Public Affairs official for White House (2013-2014)
  • Public Affairs official for Department of Homeland Security (2014-2015)
  • Public Affairs official for Defense Health Agency (2015-2016)
  • Public Relations official for American Psychiatric Association (2016-2019)
  • Chief of Staff, Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA) (2019-2020)
  • National Security Agency Lead, Biden Transition Team (2020-2021)
  • Special Assistant to the President AND (at the same time) NSC Senior Director for Partnerships and Global Engagements for Strategic Engagement (2021)
  • Chief of Staff, VA (2021-Present)

If nothing else seems obvious, what should seem obvious is Bradsher’s two decades of experience telling the public what the government wants us to know.

This includes how War on Terror detainees were treated at the Guantanamo Bay facility.

Some of her more notable comments are toward the bottom of this article, but suffice it to say the Biden Administration’s selection is focused on messaging as the first woman and woman of color to hold the role of deputy secretary. And, if Secretary Denis McDonough resigns soon, as was suggested in a recent Military Times article, she would be the first woman VA Secretary.

Bradsher’s experience reads more like someone trying out as deputy assistant secretary for intergovernmental affairs (i.e., public affairs) or director of human resources.

Is She An Organizational Leader vs A Manager?

There is a difference between an organizational leader versus someone who is a great manager but maybe not a transformative leader.

What does her background mean? Is she the right person for the job?

Is she a transformative leader based on her resume?

Is there a difference between a former CEO, like Sloan Gibson, coming to run VA as the operations officer versus a former public affairs officer with three years of experience as chief of staff? How might that difference impact VA management?

One insider told me the difference is the latter would be learning on the job while the former (Sloan Gibson) already had a long track record of success when confirmed.

Regardless, whoever takes over as deputy secretary following Donald Remy’s seemingly sudden departure will need to oversee major multi-billion dollar reforms to various IT systems.

Continued hand-holding for the electronic health record modernization is being fulfilled by Oracle-Cerner in the just renewed contract as of May 16.

VA has approved a gradual rollout of the new EHR system to ensure veterans receive safe healthcare without challenges from the records system shutting off.

For the past three years, the EHR rollout in VA’s ecosystems has been plagued with challenges, including blackouts. Imagine that. Your wife reports to VA for an urgent procedure, and the health records system goes down during the diagnostic process.

Not good.

Former deputy secretary Donald Remy promised to rectify problems plaguing the rollout when he was confirmed into the position. However, weeks after his sudden resignation in April 2023, VA announced it would “indefinitely” put all future deployments on hold.


Because Oracle-Cerner had failed to adequately address problems at the five VA sites already using the system.

MOAA noted the next deputy secretary:

“As deputy secretary, Bradsher would spearhead the VA’s overhaul of its electronic health record program, a troubled $10 billion modernization project that has faced numerous delays and currently is undergoing intense scrutiny by Congress.”

Cerner-Oracle Contract Issues

A recent news report on the rollout from the Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center suggests the flowed computer system is forcing personnel cuts at the Spokane hospital.

“A projected $35 million budget deficit at Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center caused largely by the use of a flawed computer system is forcing the Spokane hospital to reduce its staff, according to an internal email, despite the ongoing effects of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ decision to test the system there.”

The cuts were confirmed in an email from facility director Robert Fischer may need to cut up to 146 full-time personnel. And those cuts will come despite knowing clinicians can see fewer veterans due to problems with using the Oracle-Cerner record system.

It sounds like the facility is running out of money.

However, Sen. Patty Murray denied Chief of Staff Tanya Bradsher had raised the issue with Murray.

“If VA needs more funding, they should ask for it – and they haven’t,” Murray said. “I will be following this closely to ensure Mann-Grandstaff has the resources it needs to support providers and get Washington state veterans the care they deserve.”

The email from Director Fischer reportedly expressed gratitude for employees who have borne the brunt of VA’s decision to proceed with the EHR system before it was ready for prime time.

“As we charter a strategic plan that incorporates the requirements above, we cannot lose sight of our responsibility to provide safe and high-quality health care to Veterans entrusted to our care,” Fischer wrote. “In the meantime, please know that I am extremely sensitive to the many trials and tribulations you have experienced in meeting our VA mission despite often treacherous seas.”

The facility is experiencing a significant budget shortfall because the EHR software does not easily facilitate VA’s co-pay system or other methods of recovery used by VA.

In April, VA told Congress they no longer needed all the funds previously requested for the Cerner reset. VA says it will use remaining funds to improve the quality of care for veterans affected, but with looming personnel cuts, VA has yet to specify how its leadership plans to make good on the promise.

So far, Oracle-Cerner has only refunded about $325,000 of the $4.4 billion paid under the contract. The payments are supposed to compensate VA when EHR crashes.

Coming Privacy Investigations

Also coming on the horizon are a couple of major privacy investigations.

The biggest is the forthcoming VA VIEWS report of the investigation initiated by the Office of Special Counsel (OSC). Short for VA Integrated Enterprise Workflow Solution (VIEWS), the system serves as a correspondence management system under the authority of the Chief of Staff, presently Tanya Bradsher.

Whistleblowers provided evidence suggesting some VA leaders used a system of records called VIEWS to circumvent lawsuit discovery obligations, Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act requests, and whistleblower investigations by Congress.

Certified fraud examiner turned VA whistleblower Peter Rizzo complained to OSC about major privacy breaches implicating VIEWS. Rizzo said he found “incredible and unconscionable mishandling of VA employee and Veterans’ personally identifiable (“PII”), personal health information (“PHI”), and details of whistleblower disclosures.

Confidential information shared by members of Congress was collated into VIEWS without appreciable safety guards to ensure confidential communications remained confidential.

Basically, if a person complained to a member of Congress, Senator A would communicate with VA about the matter in an attempt to resolve the issue. Usually, sensitive information would be shared with the point of contact at VA.

Rather than the data remaining confidential, it would end up in VIEWS where the senior leader being complained about could review the materials informally and take action against the whistleblower while appearing to be an independent act.

When attorneys or veterans request copies of their records under FOIA, Privacy Act, or in discovery, agency attorneys fail to produce records from VIEWS, including unique documents created by and within the VIEWS system that are unique.

The instances of failure to comply with FOIA, PA, or discovery likely number in the hundreds of thousands since the VIEWS system was implemented.

Rizzo estimates “hundreds of thousands of VA employees and Veterans are at risk of having their sensitive information accessed and used nefariously.” He continued:

“The thousands of authorized VIEWS users are able to access the system without logging in ever again after their initial VIEWS log-in. It has no two-factor authentication capabilities and does not require an employee to have their HSPD-12 government ID card inserted into a connected reader—you simply click a link and you are automatically logged into VIEWS.”

Rizzo is now concerned that current status quo at VA will result in Bradsher not taking needed steps to protect employees and veterans whose records are in the system. He made a protected disclosure to her office that is supposedly being addressed.

However, “Today, almost 11 months later, Ms. Bradsher has failed to close cavernous security gaps in VIEWS, leaving employees and Veterans at incredible risk.”

“Through her inaction, she has ignored pleas from whistleblowers to protect their data, and has not been forthcoming with Congress, veteran service organizations, VA employees, or the public about the potential damage VIEWS has caused and may cause in the future.”

“For members of the Senate and House who have engaged with VA on behalf of constituents, know that your and your staff members’ communications with VA are all housed in VIEWS and often left open and accessible to potential bad actors within VA.”

VIEWS And Friends

Using Salesforce, vendor Liberty IT Solutions created a customer complaint and correspondence system for the White House Hotline to “standardize and streamline” the veteran experience in 2017.

The VIEWS rollout was incorporated into the VA Digital Transformation Center (DTC) where multiple Salesforce solutions are used for VA under the $22 billion contract Transformation Twenty-One Total Technology Next Generation (T4NG).

Another vendor, B3 Group, Inc, was awarded a $686 million contract to support VA in the rollout that included:

  • Caregiver Record Management Application (CARMA)
  • VA Loan Electronic Reporting Interface (VALERI-R)
  • White House VA Hotline (Uses VIEWS)
  • Status Query and Response Exchange System (SQUARES) for Homeless Veterans
  • VA Integrated Enterprise Workflow Solution (VIEWS) Case and Correspondence

After securing many hundreds of millions worth in contracts, Booz Allen Hamilton noticed and acquired Liberty IT Solutions.

B3 Group Inc was then acquired by Octo, an IBM company.

What does this mean?

IT Consolidation

The big boys in public sector technology are consolidating.

The pressure of who may be pulling the strings to get their share of the VA budget continues to grow without transparency.

You have a series of unsophisticated leaders within VA overseeing contracts worth billions of dollars where veterans are dependent.

Whoever becomes the deputy secretary will need to take on major vendors like IBM, Oracle, and Microsoft to protect the interests of the American taxpayer and the veterans they support.

Who wins when you put very nice people with very little leadership experience in positions of power squaring off against the most powerful software companies in the world?

It’s not veterans, and it’s not the public. We lose.

Where are some of the most procurement-sensitive intelligence records sitting?

They are in the VIEWS system – – which gives you insight and foresight into procurement. All correspondence being coordinated across offices is done through VIEWS.

VIEWS is the backbone for official correspondence across the agency.

People with access to VIEWS are not limited to VA employees.

Past Comments

There is not a lot of information about what activities Bradsher supported, especially prior to 2013. Her resume does not address what missions she supported, but a search using various resources revealed some notable topics.

Starting from 2021 to 2009 in reverse order, this is what was available. Notable are her comments as a press officer for the Office of Detainee Affairs through her other positions. Her quotes or references to her are included. While she did not make the underlying policy decisions she is speaking to, she did craft the statement and narrative broadcast by the Pentagon and other agencies at the time.

Beyer Congratulates Chief Of Staff On Administration Appointment, Announces Staff Succession; Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) News Release, Congressional Documents And Publications – January 11, 2021

Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) today congratulated his departing Chief of Staff, Tanya Bradsher, who was appointed by President-elect Joe Biden to serve as Senior Director for Partnerships and Global Engagement on the National Security Council. Beyer also announced staffing changes as a result of her departure.

“Everyone who knows Tanya knows she is a wonderful person who is bound for greatness. I wish her all the best as she continues her already-storied career of service to this country. I can’t fault President-elect Biden for stealing my Chief of Staff, he showed excellent judgment in hiring her. I will feel safer knowing that Tanya is playing this important role on the National Security Council, but I also hope that she visits us on the Hill, because we will miss her.”

Biden Expands Transition Team, Adding Key Campaign Allies And Top Obama-Biden Policy Hands, CNN – September 4, 2020

Cynthia Hogan, a long-time Biden aide and former Apple lobbyist who helped lead his vice presidential search process, is among a group of eight new senior hires being added to that staff. Other additions include Cecilia MuÃoz, the head of the Obama White House’s Domestic Policy Council; as well as Democratic political and policy veterans Tanya Bradsher, Suzy George, Don Graves, Jessica Hertz, Tara McGuinness and Darla Pomeroy. Graves and Pomeroy are also former Biden staffers.

Barack Obama Shares Op-Ed Signed By Black Members Of His Administration Calling President Trump ‘Un-American’ And Criticizing Him For The ‘Poisoning Of Our Democracy,’ MailOnline – July 28, 2019

Tanya Bradsher, former assistant secretary for public affairs, Department of Homeland Security

Johnson Warns Mall Of American Patrons, CNN Wire – February 22, 2015

His comments come as the Mall of America implements new security measures — some of which the mall said in a statement would be noticeable to shoppers.

Another DHS official clarified Johnson’s remarks later in the morning.

“Sec. Johnson didn’t say that they should not go to the mall, he told shoppers to be extra vigilant and that security was increased,” said DHS assistant secretary Tanya Bradsher.

DHS Funding Fight Threatens Secret Service, FEMA, Politico – February 18, 2015

“It gives you a couple of weeks, but after that, guess what? You’re back to planning for a shutdown,” said DHS spokeswoman Tanya Bradsher.

Use of Drones Against Al-Qaeda, The Telegraph – October 2, 2012

Tanya Bradsher, a spokesman for the White House National Security Council, said: “It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the White House holds meetings on a variety of subjects, including a number of counter-terrorism issues. The President has been clear about his goal to destroy al-Qaeda’s network and we work toward that goal every day.”

Pentagon: Captive Was Hanging By Bedsheet, The Miami Herald – May 19, 2011

Army Lt. Col. Tanya Bradsher, a Pentagon spokeswoman, would not say in which of the camps the captive was found dead of “an apparent suicide.” But she did say he was discovered early Wednesday morning “hanging from his neck by what appears to be bed linen.”

WikiLeaks: Just 8 At Gitmo Gave Evidence Against 255 Others, McClatchy Washington Bureau – April 25, 2011

At the Pentagon, Army Lt. Col. Tanya Bradsher said the military would not comment on the findings, based on documents obtained by WikiLeaks and given to McClatchy, because “the documents disclosed by Wikileaks are the stolen property of the U.S. government. The documents are classified and do not become declassified due to an unauthorized disclosure.”

WikiLeaks Cable Casts Doubt On Guantanamo Medical Care, McClatchy Washington Bureau – March 30, 2011

A State Department official said the U.S. was never able to arrange for emergency medical treatment elsewhere. But a Pentagon spokeswoman argued such a deal wasn’t really necessary.

U.S. captives in Cuba “receive the highest quality medical care, the same caliber as that received by our own service members,” Army Lt. Col. Tanya Bradsher said.

“Medical emergencies are handled on a case-by-case basis to identify the most effective means of providing appropriate medical treatment to the detainee at Guantanamo,” she said. “This may include bringing in outside medical capabilities should the need arise.”

KBRs Guantanamo Contractors Spared Controversial Anti-Malarial Drug Given To Detainees, The Public Record – March 4, 2011

Defense Department spokeswoman Maj. Tanya Bradsher had told Truthout a decision was made to presumptively treat each arriving Guantanamo detainee for malaria to prevent the possibility of having mosquito-borne [sic] spread from an infected individual to uninfected individuals in the Guantanamo population, the guard force, the population at the Naval base or the broader Cuban population.

Maj. Remington Nevin, an Army public health physician, who formerly worked at the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center and has written extensively about mefloquine, previously told Truthout the use of mefloquine in this manner is, at best, an egregious malpractice and the side effects [from administering the drug in this manner] could be as severe as those intended through the application of ˜enhanced interrogation techniques.

US May Hold Gitmo Detainee Even After Sentence Ends, The Frontrunner – February 16, 2011

McClatchy (2/15, Rosenberg) reported that the Pentagon said that after confessed al Qaeda cook Ibrahim al Qosi’s two-year terrorism sentence ends, “he could still be subject to ‘detention under the law of war’ as ‘a belligerent during an armed conflict.’” Army Lt. Col. Tanya Bradsher said, “Decisions regarding Mr. al Qosi’s status after he serves his punitive confinement will be made by the detention authorities at that time.”

ACLU: Detainee Deaths Raise Questions, UPI – January 23, 2011

Lt. Col. Tanya Bradsher, a spokeswoman for the Defense Department, said the documents the ACLU received, including autopsy reports, show how seriously the military takes detainee deaths.

Documents Raise Questions On Treatment Of Detainees, CNN – January 22, 2011

The Defense Department disputes the allegations, saying it takes detainee treatment seriously.

“DoD policy requires the immediate reporting of detainee deaths to appropriate DoD criminal investigative agencies regardless of the circumstances at the time of death,” said Pentagon spokeswoman, Lt. Col. Tanya Bradsher. “Indeed, the fact that so many autopsies and investigative reports exist indicates the seriousness with which the Department takes its responsibilities regarding detainee treatment and accountability.”

Human Experiments On Soldiers With TBI, CNN – August 3, 2010

Tests were conducted on approximately 80 service members, according to Maj. Tanya Bradsher, a Pentagon spokeswoman. Researchers were examining the effectiveness of an antioxidant called n-Acetylcysteine for treating mild traumatic brain injury, Bradsher said via e-mail.

A complaint was received in May last year and concerned “suspected research misconduct by a U.S. Navy captain and physician who had served in Iraq,” according to Bradsher.

First Guilty Plea At Guantanamo Under Obama Presidency, AFP – July 7, 2010

Ibrahim Ahmed Mahmoud al-Qosi, 50, who has been held at the US-run prison in Guantanamo since 2002, admitted that he gave logistical support to Al-Qaeda with full knowledge that the group engaged in acts of terrorism, the Pentagon said in a statement.

“His sentence will be determined at a hearing in August,” Major Tanya Bradsher told AFP in an email from the US naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Pentagon Considers Reinstating Banned Guantanamo Reporters, AFP – June 16, 2010

Four reporters who were banned from covering trials at Guantanamo have been offered an opportunity to be reinstated by requesting it in writing, a Pentagon spokeswoman said Wednesday.

Bryan Whitman, a senior Pentagon public affairs official, made the offer in a letter responding to an appeal by three of the journalists, and was expected to send a similar letter to the fourth journalist, said Major Tanya Bradsher.

“It gives them an opportunity to be reinstated if they request it in a letter,” she said.

She said the Pentagon would not release the letter, which was sent to the lawyer of three of the journalists.

Will Military Commissions Under Obama Differ From The Bush Era? Washington Independent – April 26, 2010

Maj. Tanya Bradsher, a spokeswoman for the commissions, said that a revised Manual will be issued shortly, but added that the manual was less important than the law. The standards for the admissibility of statements are set out in the Military Commissions Act of 2009, and any procedural or evidentiary rules cannot change the standards set by Congress, Bradsher said.

Mexican Helicopter Spotted In Texas Air Space, Las Cruces Sun-News – April 2, 2010

U.S. Defense Department Maj. Tanya Bradsher said the flyover was under review.

“The incident did occur and it’s still under investigation,” she said.

News Report Sparks Condemnation; Confusion Follows Report That Navy Brig Is Involved, The post and Courier – October 31, 2009

An unconfirmed Fox News report Friday that the Obama administration plans to move a handful of Guantanamo, Cuba, detainees to the Navy brig in Hanahan set off a firestorm of condemnations and confusion.

It remains unclear whether the report was accurate. The Pentagon said no decision has been made.

“We’re still looking at facilities,” said Maj. Tanya Bradsher, a Department of Detainee Affairs press officer, adding that “I don’t think a decision is imminent.” The White House had no comment.

Role of Deputy Secretary

The Center for Presidential Transition created a guide for incoming deputy secretaries that helps explain what qualifies a Dep Sec should have. For staffers, you may want to review this PDF to get an idea of what deputy secretaries should be doing to inform your questions for Bradsher.

Chat GPT also provided a brief summary:

  1. Strong leadership and management skills.
  2. Understanding of veterans’ issues and needs.
  3. Ability to navigate and manage large, complex organizations.
  4. Good communication and public affairs skills.
  5. Experience in policy development and implementation.
  6. Knowledge of the legislative process and government affairs.
  7. Ability to manage budgetary and financial matters.
  8. Crisis management skills.


This is a lot of information that boils down to a couple of questions.

Does Bradsher have what it takes to lead VA? Will she be mean when it’s time to be mean?

I have heard she is a good and friendly person. I like good and friendly people. I drink beers with them. These people do well working in Human Resources or Public Relations.

I would not hire them when I need a pitbull. And certainly not if that pitbull needs to go up against Oracle, IBM, or Booz Allen Hamilton.

That’s when you need a real smart a-hole with a lot of experience being a pitbull.

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