Incirlik Airmen earn high-value contracting officer warrants

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Brandt Self
  • 39th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Two contracting Airmen from Incirlik Air Base recently earned high-value contracting officer
warrants granting them easier access to procure goods, construction assets and services to
complete the Air Force mission more effectively and efficiently.

First Lt. Dustin Golden and Master Sgt. Cristopher Pennock, contracting officers assigned to the
39th Contracting Squadron, received an unlimited contract warrant and a $25 million warrant,

“In my entire 15 years of service, I have only seen four second lieutenants earn an unlimited
warrant,” Golden explained. “And they are all prior contracting enlisted members with years of
experience like myself.”

He noted the significance of having an unlimited contracting officer warrant, as it symbolizes his
knowledge and experience in his career field.

“It makes me feel like I made the right choice by coming into the contracting career field,”
Golden said. “[It] lets me be a motivator to my subordinates. If I can do it, so can you.”

In operational contracting, which directly supports operational missions, warrants are typically
between $250,000 and $2 million, with the highest being an unlimited warrant. The warrant is
the documented authority to enter into a contract on behalf of the government. Contracting
officers can only obligate the government to the extent of their warrant value.

Although highly encouraged, it is rare to have a high-value warrant in operational contracting,
especially for enlisted members. Pennock is one of only 14 enlisted Airmen who currently have
a $25 million warrant.

“I feel an unlimited warrant is the Holy Grail for an enlisted member, but to earn a warrant that
is over $5 million takes a lot of experience and knowledge” said Pennock. 

To earn either an unlimited or $25 million warrant involves a lot of hard work, to include having
at least two years of experience, taking a series of tests, attending multiple courses, earning
certifications, providing letters of recommendation, completing interviews and going through
an in-person warrant board with legal, policy and functional experts.

Any warrant greater than $5 million must be approved by the unit’s major command while the
unlimited warrant is issued at the Air Force level.

“A higher warrant is what every officer, civilian or enlisted member in contracting strives for,”
Pennock explained. “An unlimited warrant is…my next goal for my career.”

Both Airmen will maintain their warrants when they move to their next base, enabling them to
continue executing the Air Force mission seamlessly.

“Earning a high value warrant is a huge and significant milestone in our career field. To earn
such an honor during a short tour is a tremendous feat,” said Maj. Holland Canter, 39th CONS
commander. “With any warrant, and especially a high value warrant, comes more
responsibility, leadership opportunities and ultimately more work. I commend Master Sgt.
Pennock and 1st Lt. Golden for their dedication to the mission and our people.”