Expert Soldier Badge

Last updated
Expert Soldier Badge
US Army Expert Soldier Badge.png
Drawing of the Expert Soldier Badge
TypeSpecial Skill Badge
Presented by United States Army
EligibilitySoldiers of the U.S. Army, other than Infantry, Special Forces, or Combat Medic occupations
StatusOctober 2019–present
Related Expert Infantry Badge and Expert Field Medical Badge
First awarding of the Expert Solder Badge to SSG Tyler Lewis, a Firefinder Radar Operator (13R), 15 October 2019 US Army Expert Solder Badge and Air Assault Badge on service dress.png
First awarding of the Expert Solder Badge to SSG Tyler Lewis, a Firefinder Radar Operator (13R), 15 October 2019

The Expert Soldier Badge, or ESB, is a special skills badge of the United States Army. [1] Similar in appearance to the Combat Action Badge, the ESB is awarded to soldiers who are neither infantry, special forces, nor combat medics who demonstrate their competence in various warrior and mission essential tasks, land navigation, and physical fitness. [2] The badge was approved on June 14, 2019 and entered service in October 2019, as a way for soldiers in other military occupational specialties to certify their competence within their occupation, as well as general combat skills. [3] [4]



The concept of the ESB (initially referred to as the Expert Action Badge) was initially proposed in 2015 as part of the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command's Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO) 2020 Strategy, as one way to improve combat readiness in the Army. [5] The ESB was first openly discussed on March 30, 2017, at an NCO Development Town Hall hosted by Command Sergeant Major David Davenport. [6] Discussion mainly focused on the intent of the badge, as well as the possible criteria for award. The feasibility of the ESB was tested at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in April of the same year, with 53 soldiers taking part in the event. The results of the test at McChord, as well as future testing, will be used to determine if the criteria for the badge appropriately conveys the badge's intent. [7] The NCO 2020 Strategy, including the ESB, was further discussed in 2018 at a conference held at Fort Knox. [8]


The criteria for award of the ESB is that a soldier must perform in 30 Warrior Tasks (Skill Level 1) and battle drills, and five unit–level mission essential tasks, chosen by a commander, [9] in addition to completion of a 12-mile foot march, a land navigation test and the Army Combat Fitness Test. [7] [6] Testing is conducted at the brigade-level, with units being given a week to set up the test course, a few days of training, and then a few days of testing. [10]


Expert Soldier Badge.svg
Expert Soldier Badge
Combat Action Badge.svg
Combat Action Badge

The design for the ESB is similar to that of the Combat Action Badge. It features the same M9 bayonet and M67 fragmentation grenade, superimposed on a rectangular base, as found on the Combat Action Badge. The ESB does not, however, feature a wreath. [7]

See also

Related Research Articles

United States Army Land service branch of the United States Armed Forces

The United States Army (USA) is the land service branch of the United States Armed Forces. It is one of the eight U.S. uniformed services, and is designated as the Army of the United States in the U.S. Constitution. The oldest and most senior branch of the U.S. military in order of precedence, the modern U.S. Army has its roots in the Continental Army, which was formed 14 June 1775 to fight the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783)—before the United States was established as a country. After the Revolutionary War, the Congress of the Confederation created the United States Army on 3 June 1784 to replace the disbanded Continental Army. The United States Army considers itself to be a continuation of the Continental Army, and thus considers its institutional inception to be the origin of that armed force in 1775.

United States Army Special Operations Command Military unit

The United States Army Special Operations Command (Airborne) is the command charged with overseeing the various special operations forces of the United States Army. Headquartered at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, it is the largest component of the United States Special Operations Command. It is an Army Service Component Command. Its mission is to organize, train, educate, man, equip, fund, administer, mobilize, deploy and sustain Army special operations forces to successfully conduct worldwide special operations.

The Expert Infantryman Badge, or EIB, is a special skills badge of the United States Army. Although similar in name and appearance to the Combat Infantryman Badge (CIB), it is a completely different award. The CIB is awarded to infantrymen for participation in ground combat while the EIB is presented for completion of a course of testing designed to demonstrate proficiency in infantry skills.

Air Assault Badge Award

The Air Assault Badge is awarded by the U.S. Army for successful completion of the Air Assault School. The course includes three phases of instruction involving U.S. Army rotary wing aircraft: combat air assault operations; rigging and slingloading operations; and rappelling from a helicopter.

Expert Field Medical Badge Award

The Expert Field Medical Badge (EFMB) is a United States Army special skills badge first created on June 18, 1965. This badge is the non-combat equivalent of the Combat Medical Badge (CMB) and is awarded to U.S. military personnel and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) military personnel who successfully complete a set of qualification tests, including both written and performance portions. The EFMB is known for its adherence to its testing standards and, as such, requires strict attention to detail from candidates in order to receive a "GO" on its combat testing lanes. The pass rate for FY 2017 was 18%, making the EFMB one of the most difficult and prestigious Army special skill badges to earn.

U.S. military instructor badges

The U.S. military issues instructor badges to specially training military personnel who are charged with teaching military recruits the skills they need to perform as members of the U.S. Armed Forces or teach continuing education courses for noncommissioned officers and officers in the military. With the exception of the U.S. Army and U.S. Coast Guard, these badges are considered temporary military decorations and must be surrendered upon completion of one's duty as a military instructor. Because of this, the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and U.S. Marine Corps award Drill Instructor Ribbons as a permanent decoration to recognize service members who have qualified and performed as military instructors.

United States Army Training and Doctrine Command Military unit

Established 1 July 1973, the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) is a major command of the United States Army headquartered at Fort Eustis, Virginia. It is charged with overseeing training of Army forces and the development of operational doctrine. TRADOC operates 37 schools and centers at 27 different locations. TRADOC schools conduct 1,304 courses and 108 language courses. The 1,304 courses include 516,000 seats for 443,231 soldiers; 36,145 other-service personnel; 8,314 international soldiers; and 28,310 civilians.

Mission-type tactics, is a form of military tactics where the emphasis is on the outcome of a mission rather than the specific means of achieving it. Mission-type tactics have been a central component of the military tactics of German armed forces since the 19th century. The term Auftragstaktik was coined by opponents of the development of mission-type tactics. Opponents of the implementation of mission-type tactics were called Normaltaktiker. In today's German army, the Bundeswehr, the term Auftragstaktik is considered an incorrect characterization of the concept; instead, Führen mit Auftrag is officially used, but the older, unofficial term is more widespread.

Combat Action Badge United States Army award

The Combat Action Badge (CAB) is a United States military award given to soldiers of the U.S. Army of any rank and who are not members of an infantry or special forces MOS, for being "present and actively engaging or being engaged by the enemy, and performing satisfactorily in accordance with prescribed rules of engagement" at any point in time after 18 September 2001.

Cavalry scout Military unit

Cavalry Scout is the job title of someone who has achieved the military occupational specialty of 19D Armored Reconnaissance Specialist in the Combat Arms branch of the United States Army. As with all enlisted soldiers in the United States Cavalry, the person holding the Scout specialization will still be referred to as a "Trooper", the traditional colloquialism denoted in the cavalry's Order of the Spur.

United States Army Combined Arms Center Military unit

The U.S. Army Combined Arms Center (USACAC) is located at Fort Leavenworth and provides leadership and supervision for leader development and professional military and civilian education; institutional and collective training; functional training; training support; battle command; doctrine; lessons learned and specified areas the Commanding General, United States Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) designates in order to serve as a catalyst for change and to support developing relevant and ready expeditionary land formations with campaign qualities in support of the joint force commander.

Religious affairs specialist

A religious affairs specialist, previously known as chaplain assistant, is a member of the U.S. Army Chaplain Corps. This soldier provides expertise in religious support and religious support operations. The Religious Affairs Specialists, which is military occupational specialty (MOS) 56M, support the unit Chaplain and Commander in responding to the needs of soldiers, family members, and other authorized personnel. They act as counselors for their fellow Soldiers and provide security to Army chaplains. Duties include preparing spaces for worship, managing supplies, and ensuring the security and safety of the chaplain during combat situations.

United States Army Armor School Military unit

The United States Army Armor School is a training school located at Fort Benning, Georgia. Its primary focus is the training of United States Army soldiers, non-commissioned officers, warrant officers, and commissioned officers in the operation, tactics, and maintenance of armor forces and equipment including the M1 Abrams main battle tank, the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, the Stryker Mobile Gun System, assorted crew-served and personal weapons, and various other equipment including radios. The school is also the site where U.S. Marines are sent for training on the Abrams tank. The Armor School moved to Fort Benning in 2010 as part of the United States' Base Realignment and Closure program.

Special Service Group (Navy) Pakistan Navy special operations force

The Pakistan Navy Special Service Group abbreviated SSGN or simply Navy seals, is the special operations force tasked with the conducting the small-unit based military operations in all environmental formats of the sea, air, and land by adopting to the tactics of the unconventional warfare.

United States Army Center for Initial Military Training

Basic Training in the United States Army is the initial training for new military personnel typified by intense physical activity, psychological stress and the development of social cohesion. The United States Army Center for Initial Military Training (USACIMT) was created in 2009 under the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command to oversee training related issues.

Tabs of the United States Army American Army insignia

In the United States Army, tabs are cloth and/or metal arches displaying a word or words signifying a special skill that are worn on U.S. Army uniforms. On the Army Combat Uniform and Army Service Uniform, the tabs are worn above a unit's Shoulder Sleeve Insignia (SSI) and are used to identify a unit's or a soldier's special skill(s) or are worn as part of a unit's SSI as part of its unique heritage. Individual tabs are also worn as small metal arches above or below medals or ribbons on dress uniforms.

Richard Longo

Richard C. Longo is a retired major general of the United States Army. At the time of his retirement on 22 July 2014, he was deputy commanding general and chief of staff for U.S. Army Europe. He previously served as the deputy commanding general for Initial Military Training for the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) at Fort Monroe, Virginia.

Mission Command Training Program', based at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, is the U.S. Army's only worldwide deployable Combat Training Center. MCTP provides full spectrum operations training support for senior commanders and their staffs so they can be successful in any mission in any operational environment. Its Senior Mentors counsel and offer their experience to Army senior commanders, subordinate commanders and staff. Additionally, MCTP's professional observer-trainers assist units with objective feedback and suggestions for improvement.

Excellence in Armor

Excellence in Armor (EIA) is a program of the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command that awards outstanding Armor and Cavalry Soldiers whose performance is routinely above the standard and demonstrate superior leadership potential. The EIA was initially proposed in May 1984 and implemented in October 1987. The program rewards outstanding armor and cavalry soldiers with a Certificate of Achievement, a challenge coin from the U.S. Army's Chief of Armor, awarding of the personnel development skill identifier (PDSI) “E4J,” and will set the soldier apart from their peers during promotion boards.

Security Force Assistance Command Military unit

The Security Force Assistance Command (SFAC) is a division-level command element for the United States Army's new security force assistance brigades (SFAB). These units' core mission is to conduct training, advising, assisting, enabling and accompanying operations with allied and partner nations.


  1. Myers, Meghann (February 9, 2018). "Army putting finishing touches on new, revamped Expert Soldier Badge". Military Times. Retrieved May 18, 2018.
  2. Myers, Meghann (April 2, 2017). "Inside the Army's plan for the new Expert ction Badge". Military Times. Retrieved January 1, 2018.
  3. Panzino, Charlsy (March 24, 2017). "The Army is developing a new Expert Soldier Badge for soldiers who aren't grunts". Military Times. Retrieved January 1, 2018.
  4. Anderson, David (July 31, 2017). "Rolling out the expert soldier badge Army non-infantry soldier award". Wadena Pioneer Journal. Retrieved September 20, 2017.
  5. "NCO 2020 Strategy" (PDF). United States Army Training and Doctrine Command. December 4, 2015. Retrieved May 21, 2017.
  6. 1 2 Gragg, Michael (April 24, 2017). "CSM'S BLOG: THE CONCEPT OF THE EXPERT ACTION BADGE". United States Army Training and Doctrine Command. Retrieved May 11, 2017.
  7. 1 2 3 Kimmons, Sean (April 3, 2017). "Proposed Expert Action Badge to honor, motivate Soldiers". United States Army. Retrieved May 11, 2017.
  8. Pilgrim, Eric (April 24, 2018). "NCO ACADEMY COMMANDANTS CONVERGE ON FORT KNOX FOR TRAINING CONFERENCE". United States Army Training and Doctrine Command. Retrieved May 18, 2018.
  9. Koester, Jonathan (May 15, 2017). "POSSIBLE NEW EXPERT ACTION BADGE DRAWS INTEREST DURING TRADOC TOWN HALL". United States Army Training and Doctrine Command. Retrieved May 21, 2017.
  10. Cox, Matthew (March 24, 2017). "Army to Require Soldiers to Test for Expert Action Badge". Retrieved May 11, 2017.