Welcome, everyone, to my first Chief of Staff report! The Office of the Chief of Staff is not often one you’ll hear from with news posts or reports, but you’ll often “hear” from us in the form of awards, promotions, transfers, competition approvals, and even ship requests. So, reports will be fewer and far between, but you’ll see our impact on a more day to day level so it all balances out. Today I’ve just got a few announcements to make, so let’s get right to it!
These changes are more book keeping than anything else, but it’s all about making the system easier to use and lowering the barrier for entry as far as understanding and grasping the way our system works. The biggest change here are revisions to the Legion of Honor and Dedication Citation. Both of them are going to shift to being named “ribbon” to better match the Service Ribbon, gaming ribbons, and other basic ribbons to more easily denote and separate the activity “ribbons” from the awards given to recognize outstanding service in the form of Merit medals and other awards. As for the Legion of Honor, this has simply been to rename the award to the “Duty Ribbon” as a complement to the other writing-based ribbon the Service Ribbon. All prior instances of the award have also been updated, so you’ll see the new Duty Ribbon on your dossiers already. The Dedication Citation (all the various versions of it for various years) has been standardized into a singular Dedication Ribbon, issued one per year or Bravo Fleet service. That means that if you previously had the Dedication Citation – 1 Year you’ll have 1 of the new awards, while if you had a Dedication Citation – 15 years you’ll have 15 of the new awards now. If you were in the middle between one of the larger versions of that award (say in year 8 and in between the 5 and 10 year Citations), you can feel free to submit yourself for additional ribbons along with a note of your join date/year.
New Award Graphics
I’ve also been hard at work revising our award graphic images. First, the Starfleet Readiness Medal (given for recruiting a member to Bravo Fleet) and the Expeditionary Award (given for helping another member to which you have been assigned as a mentor advance to the rank of Lt. Commander) have been converted from ribbon graphics to full medals. These awards are of more value, both to our members and institutionally to Bravo Fleet, than activity ribbons and will be represented and valued as such. Additionally, new images have been created for all of Bravo Fleet’s competition awards in the form of new Starfleet Stars and new Action Medals. The latter were inspired by designs created by outgoing Deputy Chief of Staff Marc Davis (more on that later). The new designs of the competition medals can be seen below, while all the new medals (including the recruitment and mentoring awards) can be found on the awards page.
Promotion Requirement Changes
This is a change that has been in place now for several weeks, but I did want to officially announce it here as well. The promotion guidelines for Cadet and Junior Officer ranks has always been something that we’ve had to adapt to best suit the level of activity that we’re seeing from the membership. Those standards should not be so high that normal levels of activity from members (at any rank) would force a person working through those ranks to stall or take an amount of time largely in excess of the time in grade expectations for those ranks. The system is there to ensure that there is a standard in place for advancement, but that standard should not be onerous. As a result of what we have been seeing as far as what a general level of activity exhibited from a member has been, many of the promotion requirements for the various Cadet and Junior Officer ranks have been revised downward. This includes the number of writing (Duty and Service) ribbons, the number of gaming (Combat Action, Strategic Action, and Campaign) ribbons, the number of competitions participated in, and the number of competition placements. Our goal is to give members a reasonable path to climb for advancement, and that our ramping “difficulty curve” shouldn’t curve so far as to become a difficulty wall or, worse, overhang. These changes seem to have addressed those problems, and will be maintained as the new standard going forward.
Sadly, our newly appointed Deputy Chief of Staff had to step down recently due to personal reasons. We wish him well in his new endeavors, but this left the Chief of Staff’s office with a dearth of staffers. As such, I’ve decided to bring aboard Arden as the new Deputy Chief of Staff and Minnow Raydor as the new Staff Officer: Awards. I’ve worked with both of these folks previously, and they bring a level of experience and enthusiasm respectively that will stand them in good stead amongst the fleet’s staff. Congrats!