State of FORCECOM December 2014
With the start of the New Year just around the corner this will be fairly short and sweet because I’m sure folks have plans for the next two days and reading articles probably doesn’t sit high on folk’s ‘To Do List’.
The two topics I want to touch on are personal records and awards. If
this sounds like a rehash of previous articles of mine, you’re
probably right. Questions about awards and individual records tend to make up the biggest percentage of questions and problems that come across my desk.
So here we go.
Personal records: You nee to ask yourself ‘When was the last time I logged on and reviewed my records?’ Consider the start of the New Year a good time to go take a look. While the various Brigade OICs will work hard to make sure FORCECOM is kept up to date with information changes and awards issued to their Command, it is ultimately your personal responsibility to make sure things are accurate and ship shape. It may be something simple as making sure an email address change is reflected on your records or something a bit larger as finding that an award that is missing in your records.
No one’s going to know something is missing but you. Rather then trying to catch things up at the last minute when you’re doing the final review of your Class A’s for an upcoming event, get in the habit of reviewing your personal records every couple of months or so.
It’s a fact of life in electronic record keeping that sometimes things go missing. An email may get eaten by a spam folder. Records may be lost on a hard drive. It is the responsibility of the individual to keep a copy of all his personal records, awards received, courses completed, etc. if you find an error, it’s certainly acceptable to point it out and request the data be added, updated or changed. Just know that you’ll need to provide documentation so that the appropriate correction to the database. Documentation can be a scanned copy of the certificate, an email from the issuing authority, a copy of a Unit or Brigade report noting the award, etc.
I can’t emphasis this point enough: if it can’t be documented, it can’t be changed, corrected or added.
As a reminder as to who does what:
FORCECOM is in charge of entering Achievement and Service awards as well as making sure you’re in the right unit, etc. If you have any questions about these two classifications of awards, your Unit assignments or other personnel questions, please send them up the Chain to FORCECOM.
TRACOM manages all entries to do with SFMCA courses and Training Awards. If you’ve completed a course and you don’t see it on the database after a reasonable amount of time has past [please give them a few weeks] or you feel you are due a Training Award, contact the Dean of the specific Branch/School or go up the Chain to TRACOM.
Concerns or questions regarding either of the specialized Medical Award go directly to the SFMCA Medical Director who is the issuing authority for them.
Email addresses for all of the above can be found on the SFMC website.
Awards: I ask that all Marines who have taken on volunteer and community service projects that are targeted as part of the Commandant’s Campaign Award please contact your BDE OICs with a tally of hours donated over the last year. The Commandant/SFMC has designated the Special Olympics, Toys for Tots and MGSGT Stoddard’s ‘March for the Disabled’ that took place last March. Please tally all activities done over the year and make sure your Unit, Battalion and Brigade OICs are informed. This information has to be to COFORCECOM by the February 2015 reporting cycle to be considered for the 2014 award cycle. Please don’t skip up your Chain of Command and send it directly to me as I will simply send it right back down the Chain.
The BDE OIC will need the following: Name, SCC#, unit, what you did, the date you did it, where you did it and how many hours were spent in the activity. A minimum of 4 hours is required for consideration for this award.
in fact, it’s never a bad idea to keep your Chain of Command informed of the good deeds you and your fellow Marines have done. There will be various Brigade Musters coming up over the next few months, along with the 2015 Marine Muster in August. It is always rewarding to see good deeds recognized.
Keep it safe out there and be nice to each other.
Stand Easy, Marines.
BGN Jari “Gato” James