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Army Good Conduct Medal

Army Good Conducat Medal


The Army Good Conduct Medal (AGCM) was established by Executive Order 8809, 28 June 1941 and was amended by Executive Order 9323, 1943 and by Executive Order 10444, 10 April 1953. It is awarded for exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity in active Federal military service. It is awarded on a selective basis to each soldier who distinguishes himself or herself from among his or her fellow soldiers by their exemplary conduct, efficiency, and fidelity throughout a specified period of continuous enlisted active Federal military service, as outlined in this chapter. There is no right or entitlement to the medal until the immediate commander has approved the award and the award has been announced in permanent orders. See glossary for definition of "active Federal military service. "

     4.2 Personnel eligible

          a.  Active Component enlisted soldiers.
          b.  Active Guard Reserve (AGR) enlisted personnel serving on extended periods of active duty (other than for training) under title 10, USC are eligible for award of the AGCM for qualifying service beginning on or after 1 September 1982, provided no period of the service has been duplicated by the same period of service for which the soldier has been awarded the Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal.
          c.  Retroactively to eligible Army of the United States (AUS) enlisted personnel.
          d.  Other Army enlisted personnel as may be directed by the Secretary of the Army.

      4.3 Award approval authority

Unit commanders are authorized to award the AGCM to enlisted personnel serving under their command jurisdiction who meet the established criteria. Send requests for award of the AGCM for former soldiers to the Commander, ARPERCEN, ATTN: DARP-PAS-EAW, 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132-5200. Requests for award of the AGCM for Army National Guard and Army Reserve members for periods of active duty based on qualifying prior active Federal military service (Regular Army and AUS) will be forwarded through normal command channels to the Commander, ARPERCEN, ATTN: DARP-PAS-EAW, 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132-5200. Separation transfer points will review the records of enlisted personnel being separated to determine whether they qualify for the AGCM. Where possible, make a reasonable effort to contact the unit commander before awarding the medal to qualified members.

      4.4 Basis for approval

The immediate unit commander's decision to award the AGCM will be based on his or her personal knowledge and of the individual's official records for periods of service under previous commanders during the period for which the award is to be made. The lack of official disqualifying comment by such previous commanders qualifies the use of such period toward the award by current commander.

      4.5 Qualifying periods of service

Any one of the following periods of continuous enlisted active Federal military service qualifies for award of the AGCM or of a AGCM Clasp (para 4-9) in conjunction with the criteria in para 4-6):

          a.  Each 3 years completed on or after 27 August 1940.
          b.  For first award only, 1 year served entirely during the period 7 December 1941 to 2 March 1946.
          c.  For first award only, upon termination of service on or after 27 June 1950, of less than 3 years but more than 1 year.
          d.  For first award only, upon termination of service, on or after 27 June 1950, of less than 1 year when final separation was by reason of physical disability incurred in line of duty.
          e.  For first award only, for those individuals who died before completing 1 year of active Federal military service if the death occurred in the line of duty.

      4.6 Character of service

Throughout a qualifying period, each enlisted soldier must meet all of the following criteria for an award:
          a.  The immediate commander evaluates the soldier's character as above reproach.
          b.  The record of service indicates that the soldier has--
            (1)  Willingly complied with the demands of the military environment.
            (2)  Been loyal and obedient to their superiors.
            (3)  Faithfully supported the goals of their organization and the Army.
            (4)  Conducted themselves in such an exemplary manner as to distinguish them from their fellow soldiers.
          c.  While any record of nonjudicial punishment could be in conflict with recognizing the soldier's service as exemplary, such record should not be viewed as automatically disqualifying. The commander analyzes the record, giving consideration to the nature of the infraction, the circumstances under which it occurred and when. Conviction by court-martial terminates a period of qualifying service; a new period begins following the completion of sentence imposed by court-martial.
          d.  In terms of job performance, the soldier's efficiency must be evaluated and must meet all requirements and expectations for that soldier's grade, MOS, and experience.
          e.  Individuals whose retention is not warranted under standards prescribed in AR 604-10, paragraph 2-1, or for whom a bar to reenlistment has been approved under the provisions of AR 601-280, chapter 6 (specifically for the reasons enumerated in AR 601-280, paras 6-4a, b, and d), are not eligible for award of the AGCM.

      4-7. Additional implementing instructions

          a.  Qualifying periods of service (para 4-5) must be continuous enlisted active Federal military service. When an interval in excess of 24 hours occurs between enlistments, that portion of service prior to the interruption is not creditable toward an award.
          b.  Release from enlisted status for entry into service as a cadet or midshipman at any U.S. service academy, or discharge from enlisted status for immediate entry on active duty in an officer status is considered termination of service for awarding the AGCM. A minimum of 12 months enlisted service is required and must have been completed for first award of the AGCM; otherwise, the full 3 years of qualifying enlisted service is required.
          c.  A qualified person scheduled for separation from active Federal military service should receive the award at his or her last duty station. Such award is authorized up to 30 days before the soldier's departure en route to a separation processing installation in CONUS or overseas. Orders announcing such advance awards will indicate the closing date for the award prefixed with date of separation, on or about, as the response to the "Dates or period of service lead line. Example: from 31 Oct 1977 to date of separation on or about 30 Oct 1980. For soldiers who are granted terminal leave prior to retirement or ETS, orders awarding Second and subsequent awards of the AGCM may be issued up to 90 days before retirement or ETS date.
          d.  An award made for any authorized period of less than 3 years must be for the total period of obligated active Federal military service. This applies to first award only, all other awards of the AGCM require 3 full years qualifying service.
          e.  Discharge under provisions of AR 635-200 for immediate (re)enlistment is not termination of service.

      4-8. Disqualification for the Army Good Conduct Medal

          a.  Conviction by courts-martial terminates a period of qualifying service; a new period begins the following day after completion of the sentence imposed by the Court-Martial
          b.  Individuals whose retention is not warranted under standards prescribed in AR 604-10, paragraph 2-1, or for whom a bar to reenlistment has been approved under the provisions of AR 601-280, chapter 6 specifically for the reasons enumerated in AR 601-280, paras 6-4a, b, and d), are not eligible for award of the AGCM.
          c.  In instances of disqualification as determined by the unit commander, the commander will prepare a statement of the rationale for his or her decision. This statement will include the period of disqualification and will be referred to the individual according to AR 600-37, paragraph 3-6. The unit commander will consider the affected individuals statement. If the commander's decision remains the same, the commander will forward his or her statement, the individual's statement and his or her consideration for filing in the individuals DA Form 201 (Military Personnel Records Jacket) (MPRJ). The custodian of the MPRJ will forward these documents to Commander, U S. Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center, Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN 46249-5301, for permanent filing in the individual's OMPF.
          d.  Disqualification for an award of the AGCM can occur at any time during a qualifying period (for example when manner of performance or efficiency declines). The custodian of the MPRJ will establish the new "beginning date" for the soldier's eligibility for award of the AGCM and indicate the date on the soldier's DA Form 2-l (Personnel Qualification Record, Part II). These procedures do not apply if soldier is disqualified under the provisions of a and b above.

      4-9. Subsequent awards and clasps

A clasp is authorized for wear on the AGCM to denote a second or subsequent award. Clasps authorized for second and subsequent awards are in table 4-l.

      4-10. Army Good Conduct Medal certificate policy

          a.  The DA Form 4950 (Good Conduct Medal Certificate) may be presented to enlisted soldiers only on the following occasions:
(1)  Concurrent with the first award of the AGCM earned on or after l January 1981.
(2)  Concurrent with retirement on or after l January 1981.
          b.  When presented at retirement, the DA Form 4950 will reflect the last approved award of the AGCM earned by the soldier before retirement. The number of the last earned award will be centered immediately beneath the line "THE GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL" for example "Sixth Award." The period shown on the certificate will be the period cited in the last award earned by the soldier.
          c.  The DA Form 4950 will not be presented for second or subsequent awards of the AGCM except as provided in (2) above.
          d.  DA Form 4950 is available from the U.S. Army Publications Distribution Center, ATTN. SFIS-APC-BD, 2800 Eastern Boulevard, Baltimore, MD 21220-2896.

      4-11. Retroactive Award

          a.  Retroactive award to enlisted personnel and to officer personnel who qualified in an enlisted status, is authorized provided evidence is available to establish qualification. Where necessary, to correct conflicting or duplicate awards, previous general or permanent orders may be revoked and new orders published, citing this paragraph as authority.
          b.  Requests for retroactive awards to enlisted persons which cannot be processed due to lack of information will be forwarded to Commander, U.S. Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN 46249-5301, by the commander having command jurisdiction. Upon receipt of eligibility information from U.S. Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center (USAEREC), the commander can take action to confirm retroactive award of the AGCM by publication of orders, or by informing the soldier of findings of ineligibility.

AR 600-8-22 25 February 1995 4-1

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