The Air Force is giving 57 airmen in a specific maintenance career field another shot at making technical sergeant after a flaw in the promotion process was uncovered.

The Air Force Personnel Center on Monday said that the passed-over airmen, who are in the 2A5X4A refueling/bomber aircraft maintenance Air Force specialty code, should have been considered for promotion alongside the 2A5X4C AFSC. But instead, they were mistakenly considered as part of the broader 2A5X4 career field, which hurt their chances for promotion.

Those airmen, who specialize in maintaining C-135, E-3 and E-8 aircraft, are being notified they were incorrectly considered for promotion, AFPC said. They will be automatically considered for supplemental promotion in their correct AFSC.

“Once we became aware of this anomaly, our enlisted promotions team identified the airmen affected,” outgoing AFPC commander, Maj. Gen. Brian Kelly, said in the release. Kelly has been nominated to be the Air Force’s next personnel chief. “These airmen will receive automatic supplemental promotion consideration at the original promotion rate within their proper AFSC. This provides a fair opportunity for selection.”

AFPC said no other airmen were affected by this mistake in the tech sergeant promotion process, which was announced earlier this month.

The command has strengthened its internal processes to reduce the chances of such mistakes happening again, personnel officials said.

“Our Air Force’s promotion processes are among the most important things we do, and we absolutely owe it to our airmen to get it right,” Kelly said. “Our goal is, and always will be, 100 percent accuracy. But if an error occurs, regardless of the number of airmen impacted, we’ll remedy the situation for each airman, resolve it and review our processes to help ensure it doesn’t happen again.”

AFPC said it took another look at its tech sergeant promotions after some airmen expressed concerns about the selection rates in that field. The unofficial Facebook page Air Force amn/nco/snco also received and posted a message from an airman raising questions about the promotions.

Stephen Losey is the air warfare reporter for Defense News. He previously covered leadership and personnel issues at Air Force Times, and the Pentagon, special operations and air warfare at He has traveled to the Middle East to cover U.S. Air Force operations.

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