Chief master sergeants in 45 career fields are being targeted for retirement under the Air Force’s first retention board for that rank, according to a memo obtained by Air Force Times.
The retention board will meet June 10-13 to select which chief master sergeants should remain on active duty, and which should retire. Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve chief master sergeants will not be included in this board.
“The Air Force is committed to retain only the best performers while achieving fiscal year end strengths,” said the Dec. 13 Air Force Personnel Center memo, dubbed PSDM 13-123. “This program was developed to be enduring and do just that. We will continue to take care of our airmen and families; but our airmen need to perform well to serve.”
The board is one of 18 force management programs the Air Force is rolling out in fiscal 2014 to reduce the ranks and deal with across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh has repeatedly said the service will have to cut up to 25,000 airmen over the next five years if sequestration continues.
Only chief master sergeants who are eligible for retirement and serving in those targeted career fields will be considered by the retention board. Chiefs will be told if they are on the final list of airmen who will be considered by the board no later than April 18.
The Air Force is accepting voluntary retirements from chief master sergeants and will continue to do so until March 15. Applications for voluntary retirement will be approved or denied by April 4, and airmen whose voluntarily retirement is approved must do so no later than Jan. 1, 2015. That means they will be able to stay in the Air Force slightly longer than airmen selected for retirement by the board. Those airmen will have to retire by Nov. 1, 2014.
Enlisted retention boards are already commonly held by the Army and Navy, but are new to the Air Force. Retention boards for senior airmen, staff sergeants, tech sergeants, and senior noncommissioned officers are also in the works.
The list of overmanned career fields that have been targeted for losses by the chief master sergeant retention board is as follows:
■1A100 Flight engineer
■1A300 Airborne mission systems
■1A400 Airborne operations
■1A800 Airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance
■1A900 Special missions aviation
■1C000 Aviation resource management
■1C300 Command post
■1C600 Space system operations
■1P000 Aircrew flight equipment
■2A300 Fighter/remotely piloted aircraft
■2A500 Airlift/special mission aircraft maintenance
■2A600 Aerospace ground equipment
■2G000 Logistics plans
■2M000 Missile and space systems maintenance
■2P000 Precision measurement equipment laboratory
■2R000 Maintenance management
■2S000 Materiel management
■2T000 Traffic management
■2T100 Vehicle operations
■2T300 Vehicle management
■2W100 Aircraft armament systems
■3D000 Cyber operations
■3D100 Cyber systems
■3E000 Facility systems
■3E900 Emergency management
■3N000 Public affairs
■3P000 Security forces
■3S000 Force support
■4A100 Medical materiel
■4A200 Biomedical equipment
■4E000 Public health
■4M000 Aerospace and operational physiology
■4N000 Aerospace medical service
■4T000 Medical laboratory
■6F000 Financial management
■7S000 Special investigations
■8F000 First sergeant
■9S100 Scientific applications specialist