The Air Force has announced that 619 enlisted airmen have been selected for supplemental promotion.
The list of selectees posted by the Air Force Personnel Center Thursday includes 443 airmen chosen for promotion to staff sergeant and 144 selected for technical sergeant.
The publicly-released list excludes airmen whose jobs require secrecy, such as those in intelligence career fields, who work at the Office of Special Investigations, or who work in intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance jobs.
The number of airmen selected for supplemental promotion to staff sergeant this month is considerably higher than in December 2019, when 271 airmen were selected for E-5.
Part of the increase in supplemental promotions at the end of the year is a result of the coronavirus pandemic. First, the testing processes for staff and technical sergeant were put on hold in the early days of the pandemic. But even after testing resumed, social distancing requirements limited how many airmen could test at once, so deadlines were extended. Staff and tech sergeant promotions were delayed a month as a result.
Even still, many staff sergeant tests were not graded in time — or even taken — and the selection rate was considerably lower than in recent years. The Air Force said that more airmen would likely be promoted to staff sergeant in the supplemental process as a result.
Each month, the Air Force conducts a supplemental promotion cycle to consider enlisted airmen who were unable to test during the normal window, such as those who were deployed or on an extended temporary duty assignment, or who saw significant changes in their promotion file.
Stephen Losey covers leadership and personnel issues as the senior reporter for Air Force Times. He comes from an Air Force family, and his investigative reports have won awards from the Society of Professional Journalists. He has traveled to the Middle East to cover Air Force operations against the Islamic State.