WASHINGTON — Dana W. White, a consultant, former staffer for Sen. John McCain and public affairs specialist for Northrop Grumman, has been tapped by Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis for a top public affairs role.

White has been appointed assistant to the secretary of defense for public affairs, but a Pentagon spokesman said there is no decision made on whether White will fill the role of press secretary, addressing the press from the podium during regular briefings, or if that role would go to someone else. 

White joins retired Army Col. Steve Warren, a former spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve, as the core of Mattis' public affairs team. Warren was appointed as a media adviser to Mattis in early March. 

Her LinkedIn account shows a background of public affairs and policy jobs. She served as Taiwan country director for the office of the undersecretary of defense for policy before acting as a foreign policy adviser for McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign. She then joined the Arizona Republican senator's staff on the Senate Armed Services Committee, with a focus on foreign policy issues.

White then bounced around, spending 11 months with the McChrystal Group for retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal before spending 10 months with Northrop Grumman’s D.C. area office. While at Northrop she worked on program accounts including the MQ-8 Fire Scout drone, UCLASS (Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike), JSTARS (Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System), maritime lasers, and the B-2 bomber, as well as legislative affairs issues. White later moved to France for three years to work for the Renault-Nissan Alliance, focusing on automobile issues. Since 2015, she has served as CEO of 1055 Grady, her own consultancy firm.

White is also the author of several articles about leadership, including a book released in 2016 titled "

." McCain tweeted out congratulations upon the release of the book.

Aaron Mehta was deputy editor and senior Pentagon correspondent for Defense News, covering policy, strategy and acquisition at the highest levels of the Defense Department and its international partners.

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