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After COVID delay, Air Force selects 8,246 for promotion to tech sergeant

The Air Force Personnel Center said Tuesday that 8,246 enlisted airmen have been selected for promotion to technical sergeant.

There were 28,358 staff sergeants who were eligible for promotion to E-6, resulting in a selection rate of 29.08 percent.

AFPC said in a release that it will release the list of selectees the morning of Aug. 24.

The E-6 promotion announcement, which is usually made in July, was delayed this year. First, the Air Force in February extended the testing window for 6,000 airmen in 18 career fields after an envelope of tests was lost in the mail. That Weighted Airman Promotion System testing window was originally set to close March 15, but was extended to April 30 to give Air Education and Training Command time to rewrite the tests and mail them to more than 80 locations around the world.

Then in March, promotion testing for technical sergeants, as well as staff sergeants, was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, resuming May 11 and ending July 31.

The first newly selected airmen will begin pinning on their new ranks Sept. 1, which is one month later than they would have before the pandemic upended the promotion process, AFPC said. Airmen who should have pinned on their technical sergeant ranks Aug. 1 will receive backdated pay.

The 29 percent selection rate is slightly lower than the previous three E-6 promotion cycles, which varied from roughly 30.5 percent to 32.3 percent. But it is still much higher than the selection rates during and shortly after the drawdown, which hit a low of 15 percent in 2013.

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