“He is one of our brightest minds, a thoughtful leader and a great pick for this important post”, Shanahan said on Twitter shortly after Hyten’s nomination was announced by Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson.
Wilson, speaking at the Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, said the Pentagon sent Hyten's nomination to Congress on Monday.
The vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs is the second-ranking US military officer behind the chairman. Hyten currently serves as the commanding officer of US Strategic Command (STRATCOM).
Earlier on Tuesday, Hyten told reporters on the sidelines of a Space Forum in Colorado Springs that the US should be in the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) with its adversaries including Russia.
Meanwhile, Trump said earlier that he would nominate Army General Mark Milley to succeed Marine General Joseph Dunford as chairman of the Joint Chiefs when Dunford's term ends 1 October.