The Signal Chief

Getting from A to Z


When I entered the Army in July 1999, I came in as 31F (switch operator). Anyone who worked with MSE will remember that it had almost absolutely no data capabilities, but also that it was extremely easy to troubleshoot. Signal flow for MSE was pretty darn easy to understand. If you understood the idea of how the system worked, the signal flow was easy to follow. With the introduction of JNN and IP data networks to tactical communications, logical and physical said “It’s been fun” and headed their separate ways leaving our operators and even ourselves busy scratching our heads wondering how the hell it all worked.

2015 Warrant Officer Promotion List

Warrant Officer 97 Years of Service

So in case you missed it, at long last the FY 15 warrant officer promotion list was released (two weeks into FY16). You can see the list here. While I am sure that branch will send out their analysis shortly a couple of quick numbers after looking at the list.

Cyber Operations Technician Warrant Officer Accession Details Announced


MILPER Message 15-294 was released today which officially announced the details of the first 170A Cyber Operations Technician accession board. I had previously said that I believed that the Jan 2016 selection board would be the first time that 170A was looked at, instead it looks like it will now be the March 2016 board which is expected to be held O/A 14 March 2016.

Creating a new Corps


The Army has been in the process of standing up its new Cyber Corps for a little while now. Starting with the creation of the 17A MOS for regular officers, and followed by the recently completed its first round of Voluntary Transfer Incentive Program (VTIP) for the warrants working to start to fill the 170A warrant officer slots, and finishing out the processes with the initial fill of Soldiers who are becoming 17C.

What’s Your Clearance?

According to, one of the most valuable things that any of us can bring to the table when we transition out of the Army is our security clearance. As a warrant officer, each and every one of us (regardless of MOS) is required to keep a SECRET clearance just to keep or jobs. In the civilian word, a SECRET clearance is great, but having a TOP SECRET is just a little bit better (and in many cases a lot more money).

Reflections from the NTC

In the 3 years, 4 months and 1 day since I arrived on Fort Irwin to being my job as the senior NETOPS trainer I can say that my perspective today compared to then has changed significantly. During that time I have worked on 26 rotations with 24 BCTs (2 of them twice), 21 Net Techs (3 of them twice) and way more signal Soldiers than I could possibly count. What follows are a number of final thoughts as I finish my time at the NTC.

Army Directive 2015-30

In case you missed it, CW5 Williams sent out the signed copy of Army Directive 2015-30 which states basically that if you want to hold specific jobs (there’s a list of them) in the future, you will need to complete all of the required PME for your particular rank. Most of the jobs listed are CW5 positions (and a few CW4 from the looks of it) but I expect eventually this will move down the road to effect promotions and other things. Short of it is, go to school (guess I really need to do the advance course one of these days)