Ashton Carter currently serves as the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics. (Rob Curtis / Staff)
Pentagon acquisition chief Ashton Carter has been nominated by the president to become the next deputy defense secretary, replacing William Lynn, according to the White House.
Lynn is expected to step down as the Pentagon's No. 2 civilian this fall after more than two and a half years in the post.
Carter currently serves as the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics.
Before taking his Pentagon job in 2009, Carter was chair of the International and Global Affairs faculty at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. From 2006 to 2008, he served as a member of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's International Security Advisory Board, according to the White House announcement.
During the Clinton administration from 1993 to 1996, Carter served as assistant secretary of defense for international security policy.
"During that time, he directed military planning during the 1994 crisis over North Korea's nuclear weapons program and was instrumental in removing all nuclear weapons from the territories of Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus," the White House announcement said.
Carter holds a bachelor's degree from Yale University and a doctorate from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar.
Lynn told Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on July 1 of his plans to resign, saying the new secretary would be best served by a deputy who could stay through President Obama's first term. He said he would not be able to make that kind of commitment because he'd like to spend more time with his children.
Obama has yet to announce who will replace Carter as Pentagon acquisition chief, but Navy acquisition chief Sean Stackley is rumored to be a frontrunner for the job. Before taking the Navy job, Stackley served as a professional staff member on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Carter's nomination now goes to the Senate for review.