The Air Force is making changes to its enlisted evaluation and promotion systems as they enter year two, according to a release. Now, instead of 10 enlisted performance reports available for review by senior noncommissioned officer evaluation boards, only five will be available, starting with the 2016 master sergeant evaluation board. Additionally, the Air Force is moving to a single-phase process for the upcoming master sergeant evaluation board, in which all weighted factors and board scores are combined in one score for each airman. “After going through the first master sergeant evaluation board in 2015, we were able to assess our capacity to review all eligible airmen. We now know our systems, facility, and annual board schedule can support boarding all eligible technical sergeants,” said Brig. Gen. Brian Kelly, director of military force management policy. “This adjustment allows every technical sergeant a chance to have their performance reviewed on its own merit directly by the board.” Additionally, starting this year EPR point calculations for promotion to grades E-5 and E-6 will be based only on an airman’s last three forced distributed reports in their current grade, according to the press release.
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.