In the United States Air Force, highly qualified Master Sergeants are chosen for the special Senior Noncommissioned Officer position of First Sergeant. A job rather than a rank, First Sergeants are in the same pay grade (E-7) as Master Sergeants, but their focus is to serve as enlisted advisors to commanders, assisting them with input on a variety of issues—morale, health, discipline, professional training and development, welfare, and more—they can affect mission efficacy.

To identify Master Sergeants selected to serve as First Sergeants, the Air Force approved the addition of a diamond, referred to as a lozenge in heraldry, to the E-7 chevrons. The insignia change was approved in 1954 by Air Force Chief of Staff General Nathan Twining.

The distinctive E-7 First Sergeant chevrons are issued in Large and Small sizes and in two styles: ABU (for wear only on the Airman Battle Uniform) and what we refer to as “Dress Blue” for all other types of uniforms and garments. Female Airmen are given the option of Large or Small chevrons on a host of uniforms, while Large chevrons are required on the jackets of the Men’s Mess Dress, Service Dress, and ABU, as well as on men’s outwear garments (Topcoat, All-Weather Coat, Lightweight Blue Jacket; they are also the only option for the Chef’s coat and the Ceremonial Band Tunic. Small chevrons, on the other hand, are always worn on shirt and blouse sleeves, centered either between the shoulder seam and elbow (on long-sleeve shirts) or between the shoulder seam and the bottom of the sleeve (short-sleeve). Detailed instructions are found in AFI 36-2903.

About us

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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Salute Industries Inc, proud maker of The Salute Uniforms.
105 Apache Drive, Archdale, NC, 27263. Tel: 1-844-937-2588