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The Logistics Branch Officer Lifecycle Model

Functional Area (FA) 90 was created in 1993 within the operations career field to support the
development of multifunctional logisticians. Since then, the FA 90 designation has represented multifunctional logistics officers. This article provides a framework that these officers, who now belong to the Logistics branch, can use to guide their career choices.

The Logistics (LG) branch, established on 1 January 2008 by the Secretary of the Army in General Orders 2007–06, is made up of officers from captains who have completed the Combined Logistics Captains Career Course (CLC3) to colonels. The LG branch has two types of officers. The first type of officer holds a primary area of concentration (AOC) of 90A (multifunctional logistician) with a secondary AOC that corresponds to the officer’s basic branch of Quartermaster (92A or 92F), Ordnance (91A), or Transportation (88A). The second type of officer holds a primary AOC of 89E (explosive ordnance disposal [EOD] specialist) and a secondary AOC of 91A until the officer’s volunteer statement is revoked; then EOD captains transition to 90A with a secondary AOC of 91A.

The LG branch is not an entry-level branch. Second lieutenants enter one of the three functional logistics branches: Quartermaster, Ordnance, or Transportation. Traditionally, once these officers complete Basic Officer Leader Course (BOLC) phases II and III, they are assigned to logistics units where they serve as platoon leaders, executive officers, or assistant battalion-level staff officers to gain troop-leading experience and enhance their technical and tactical knowledge.

Officers selected for promotion to captain attend CLC3, which is a four-phase resident course designed to prepare officers for company command and for multifunctional logistics assignments on battalion- and brigade-level staffs. As part of the graduation ceremony, officers are inducted into the Logistics branch.

Once captains complete a company command assignment, they serve as logistics staff officers in both the operating and generating forces. Select groups of captains attend advanced civil schooling or serve on Army, joint, interagency, intergovernmental, and multinational staffs, which enhance and broaden their understanding of Army and multifunctional logistics operations.

Between their 9th and 12th years of service, LG officers selected for promotion to major attend Intermediate Level Education. This prepares field-grade officers for their next 10 years of service by providing leadership training focused on warrior ethos and warfighting for Army, joint, multinational, and interagency organizations executing full-spectrum operations. Logistics majors are primarily staff officers who serve as battalion support operations officers and battalion executive officers and on brigade and higher logistics staffs.

Lieutenant colonels in the LG branch primarily serve in key staff and joint positions in sustainment brigades, expeditionary sustainment commands, theater sustainment commands, and division, corps, Army, and joint staffs. A select group of lieutenant colonels is selected for battalion-level commands. After successful command time, these officers are assigned to Army and joint, interagency, intergovernmental, and multinational organizations to serve in key logistics staff positions. Some officers also attend a senior service college or participate in fellowship programs. While battalion command time is not mandatory for promotion to colonel, it may enhance the officer’s potential for assignment to a brigade-level command.

LG colonels serve primarily in staff assignments at the operational and strategic levels. These officers serve in key staff and joint positions in expeditionary sustainment commands, theater sustainment commands, and corps or higher staffs. Although no specific mandatory military education requirement exists for colonels, attendance at a senior service college or completion of the Army War College Distance Education Course identifies those officers with exceptional promotion potential for positions of increased responsibility at the next higher grade. A few will receive the privilege of commanding brigade-level organizations. Success at the brigade level will provide an opportunity to compete for brigadier general.

This article is not intended to serve as a roadmap or prescription for success. It is merely a framework for officers to use in developing a career timeline. Before developing a personal timeline, LG officers should read Department of the Army Pamphlet 600–3, Commissioned Officer Professional Development and Career Management, and consult with mentors, family members, and their career branch assignment officer to ensure a complete picture is created. The timeline should be reviewed and updated periodically to ensure validity.

Lieutenant Colonel Victor S. Hagan is an Army logistics officer who previously served as the Logistics Branch Proponency Office chief at the Army Combined Arms Support Command at Fort Lee, Virginia. He is currently attending the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington, D.C.

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