As an all-volunteer civilian organization, the Coast Guard Auxiliary does not employ formal rank identification, instead recognizing the increased responsibilities that are incumbent with higher and higher positions of authority within the service’s management structure. Additionally, the Auxiliary uses a unique system for appointing members to various levels in the management chain of leadership, in which Auxiliarists elected to serve in leadership positions appoint staff officers to perform administrative duties.

This system of elected leaders and personally appointed staffers, combined with relatively short terms in office (one year for elected offices up to Division Captain, two years for higher elected positions), means it’s very possible for Auxiliarists to have once held a higher officer than the one they currently hold. What’s more, the Auxiliary Manual makes it clear that past appointed and elected leaders are authorized to permanently wear the insignia representing the highest office they have ever held, provided they served in that role for at least half of its designated term.

To make it clear that an office insignia does not reflect the member’s current status, Auxiliarists who wish to wear an insignia of a previously held elected or appointed office that is higher than their current officer must wear the Past Officer insignia. Note that the Past Officer insignia does not feature a blue or red “A” to signify whether the office was an appointed or elected one; this is displayed on the appropriate office insignia itself.
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As a certified manufacturer of uniforms and insignia, The Salute Uniforms considers it a privilege to provide the members of our nation’s military services with superior-quality apparel and accoutrements. We guarantee that every product we offer is made in the USA and meets or surpasses Mil-Spec standards. Browse our online catalog and discover how our tradition of excellence and commitment to innovation makes us your best source for military uniforms, insignias, medals, and accessories.


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