Meet Leah Esper, The Wife Of Defense Secretary Mark Esper

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Who Is Mark Esper's Wife, Leah Esper?
Entertainment And News

They have three children together.

In 2019, Mark Esper was confirmed as Defense Secretary just hours after Donald Trump announced his eligibility. The move caused much backlash, since it was so abrupt and Esper would be the third individual to hold the position under Trump's presidency.

Esper graduated from West Point and was formerly the legislative director and senior policy adviser to Senator Chuck Hagel, and the Director of National Security Affairs to Bill Frist. He was also a Raytheon executive. 

In 2017, Trump appointed him as Army secretary. In addition, Esper has held many high governmental positions, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Aerospace Industries Association, and the Heritage Foundation. He was also the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Negotiations Policy from 2002 to 2004. 

Yet, when he was confirmed as Defense Secretary, he gave a lengthy speech about how his wife was more important to his career than anyone had recently given her credit for.

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Who is Mark Esper's wife, Leah Esper? 

Let's look at what we know about this housewife and mother. 

Her husband, Mark Esper, thanked her extensively in his confirmation speech. 

Esper admits that if it weren't for the support of his wife, he wouldn't have the career he has. 

"I want to thank the President and Secretary Mattis for this opportunity and their confidence in me. I would like to begin by recognizing my wife, Leah, and our children — Luke, John, and Kate — who are with me today. Like many military families, they made sacrifices in support of my service in the Army.

I tell this story because of the big thanks I owe my wife for all of the support she gave me during those years, and the terrific job she did raising our children when I was gone. Her support is something I know I will lean on again should I be confirmed as the next Secretary of the Army," he said, according to the official bio.

Leah Esper claims to be a teacher, but there's no record of her being licensed. 

There have been some suggestions that, thanks to her background working at an Athletic Booster Club, she also was a licensed teacher in Fairfax, VA. However, according to the official Department of Education website in Fairfax, VA, Esper has no record of ever being a licensed teacher for the district.

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Like other officials in the Trump administration, Esper's husband is problematic, to say the least. 

When Donald Trump became president, he promised to "drain the swamp." However, it seems that based on his subsequent administrative choices, he seems to rather enjoy living in the swamp. 

And Mark Esper is yet another so-called "swamp dweller" that the Trump administration seems to be proud of. 

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Reports have said, "Esper is one of three acting secretaries who’ve served since Jim Mattis resigned in December, including Patrick Shanahan, who was initially nominated by President Donald Trump to take on the role permanently but withdrew from consideration in June amid revelations of domestic violence involving his ex-wife and son. 

Then there’s the Raytheon issue. The contractor produces electronics for a wide array of U.S. combat systems. Esper spent seven years as the company’s top lobbyist in Washington. With Esper’s confirmation, four Trump Cabinet departments will be led by former lobbyists.

Despite Trump’s executive order requiring officials not to lobby the agencies where they once worked for five years after leaving government, ProPublica reported in February that at least 33 former officials have found their way around the pledge. The swamp is far from drained."

To her credit, Esper has visited the families of troops. 

One thing that can be said in her favor: Esper knows a thing or two about the struggles that working military families face.

In the past, she's been photographed paying visits to military bases to read to the children of deployed soldiers. According to the Defense Visual Information Services, in fact, she's known for her love of military families. 

"One of Esper’s first stops of the day was the new Fort Campbell High School, a 21st-century school for ninth through 12th grade that is scheduled to open Aug. 6, 2018... Mrs. Esper’s visit allowed us to highlight a myriad of ways that Fort Campbell High School supports our military-connected students and their Families... Our students are the heart of our school and we are honored to provide support to the children of our 101st Family...

The recently completed, $59 million, 184,000-square-foot, two-story facility is energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable. In May 2015 Walsh Federal began construction of the school that is considered to be a Department of Defense Education Activity model," reported the outlet.

They have 3 grown children.

According to Mark Esper's bio on the official Department of Defense website, Leah Esper has three adult children — Luke, John, and Kate — with her longtime husband, and they've been married for 30 years.

Esper has a role in the coronavirus pandemic.

Esper recently made the announcement that individual states can use the National Guard to enforce stay-at-home orders.

Esper said, “That would be an option for the governors. Again, the guard is active in all 50 states and territories. I'm very proud of what our guardsmen are doing, but we have a whole lot more capacity out there in the guard right now to do more.”

He went on to explain how this could possibly put a stop to the effects of the outbreak, saying, “You know, we typically think of National Guard dealing with a hurricane in a state or a series of tornadoes, and this case right now, we have 54 hurricanes out there. And every single state and territory, and we know they're going to grow in size and in their power.”

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, and photographer whose work has appeared in People, Teen Vogue, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and more.

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Editor's Note: This article was originally posted on July 19, 2019 and was updated with the latest information.