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Chief selects’ recognition ceremony Saturday

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- Five of the Air Force's newest chief master sergeants are scheduled to be recognized at the Annual Chief Recognition Ceremony on base Saturday.

During the ceremony, the new chief selects will be recognized by the Holloman Chief's Group, said Chief Master Sgt. James Harris, 49th Maintenance Group.

Holloman's newest chiefs are John Gibson, 49th Civil Engineer Squadron, Jimmy Lewis, 49th Maintenance Squadron, Steven Watson, 49 MXS, Randy LaCombe, 4th Space Control Squadron and Johann Joerg, German air force.

The ceremony will be a small, low-key dinner with the chiefs and chief selects along with family and friends, said Chief Harris.

"Being recognized as a chief signifies reaching the pinnacle of your career," said Chief Harris. "The ceremony solidifies making the rank for the selectees."

But the new chiefs don't feel much different since being selected.

"I don't feel any different," said Sergeant Lewis. "Everyday I come to work and work hard like I have for the last 21 years."

As with many aspects in the Air Force, there is tradition in becoming a chief master sergeant.

Chiefs go through the recognition ceremony and also to what is known as "Charm School," said Sergeant Lewis. The "Charm School" is the chief's orientation course held at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb.

One tradition Holloman chiefs takes part in is the Jeep Chief.

"It's to identify the new chief on base," said Chief Harris.

The Jeep Chief must carry around a wooden box which contains a toy Jeep at all times or someone might try to steal it away from them. The Jeep Chief must also put a new accoutrement on the Jeep before passing it off to the next Jeep Chief.

Another tradition is the previous year's chiefs must coordinate the current year's recognition ceremony, said Chief Harris.

According to Air Force doctrine, chief master sergeants must epitomize the finest qualities of a military leader. The ceremony at the Oasis Enlisted Club will bring Holloman's finest up for recognition.