Hoover Fellow contributes to military personnel system reforms

Tim Kane
Hoover Institution Fellow Tim Kane

When the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act was signed into law on Aug. 13, its highly anticipated personnel reforms came with a connection to the Hoover Institution—TIM KANE.

An economist, Kane is a former U.S. Air Force intelligence officer and the JP Conte Fellow in Immigration Studies at the Hoover Institution. He has championed Pentagon personnel reform for nearly five years as a Hoover Research Fellow, hosting events in Washington, D.C., and Stanford, and capped by the publication of his 2017 book, Total Volunteer Force: Lessons from the US Military on Leadership Culture and Talent Management.

In January, Kane was invited to testify before the U.S. Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel. “The Pentagon has a talent problem, and it cannot fix that problem until Congress changes the archaic law known as DOPMA [Defense Officer Personnel Management Act],” Kane told the assembled senators before describing a bipartisan approach they could take.

Seven months later, the defense legislation that was signed by President Trump enacted the most widespread reform of DOPMA since 1980. The reforms and new policies go into effect on Oct. 1.

In a recent interview with Stars and Stripes, Kane said, “The revolution has arrived. There is a theme and that theme is ‘up or out’ is out. Flexibility is in.”

Kane believes that the inclusion of reforms in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is a “policy case study in success” because it includes reforms and principles that “we at Hoover have been advocating for decades, dating back to work on the all-volunteer force pioneered by Martin Anderson and Milton Friedman and continued by (Hoover fellow) Admiral Gary Roughead.”

Read more on the Hoover Institution website.