Policy Change Means Boards Will See Junior Officer Black Marks
Most officers are familiar with a policy that has been in place since 1997, which masks junior officer evaluation reports once the officer is promoted to captain or chief warrant officer three. Beginning in early 2015, however, the policy has changed. Now, when officer evaluation reports are submitted for filing in an officer’s Army Military Human Resources Record (AMHRR), they will be included in the packet that promotion, school, and command boards see when making decisions.
The original purpose of the old policy was to prevent officers from being penalized later in their careers for mediocre ratings or black marks acquired when they were still adjusting to military life. According to Secretary of the Army John McHugh, however, the change is needed to shift the Army back to its competitive, best-qualified method of selecting officers for promotion.
Supporters of the change say that it will also allow boards to consider officers who showed physical ability, moral fiber, or intellectual capacities during their early careers. However, opponents are concerned that the policy will also unfairly penalize officers who faced some early troubles, but who have since demonstrated their commitment and skill in the best Army tradition.
Experienced California civilian military defense lawyers like Attorney Joseph H. Low IV have noted the change because certain criminal and other charges may be included in the information that has now been made available to boards. If you’re concerned about how this new policy or a past infraction might affect your future career, including an upcoming promotion, don’t hesitate to speak to an experienced attorney for more information.