President Donald Trump has nominated a U.S. Special Operations Command executive to serve as an assistant secretary of the U.S. Navy.
James F. "Hondo" Geurts has been nominated to the post of assistant secretary over development and acquistion. Geurts currently serves in the senior executive service at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, where he is responsible for all special operations forces research, development, acquisition, procurement, and logistics.
A retired U.S. Air Force colonel, Geurts' previous posts at SOCom include deputy director of special operations research and commander of the Joint Acquisition Task Force Dragon. He also served as program executive officer for the for fixed-winged aircraft there.
Geurts was described by a Tampa Bay Times columnist as "a budding rock star in Tampa Bay's defense industry." Geurts was the driving force behind Thunderdome and Sofwerx, ongoing military-civilian idea incubators in Tampa Heights and Ybor City, to develop innovations for special forces needs. That includes the exo-skeleton "Iron Man" suit, formally known as the Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit or TALOS.
Geurts is a graduate of Lehigh University, the Air Force Institute of Technology and the National Defense University.
The nomination requires Senate confirmation.