Dates: 1999 to Present
Criteria: Awarded to recognize Air Force active duty, Reserve and Guard personnel who complete a contingency tour of duty in support of air expeditionary deployments
Devices: Bronze, Silver Oak Leaf Cluster, Gold Frame
The Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon was approved by the Secretary of the Air Force in October, 2003 to recognize service members who support air expeditionary force deployments subsequent to Oct. 1, 1999. For purposes of the award, “deployed status” is defined as either deployment on contingency, exercise, deployment orders or members sourced in direct support, in theater or out, of expeditionary operations with an overnight stay away from home station. To qualify, members must have deployed for 45 consecutive or 90 nonconsecutive days with no time limit. Each 60/90 day deployment period counts towards an award of the ribbon or a bronze oak leaf cluster for each subsequent qualifying period. In Apr. 2004, the Secretary of the Air Force and Air Force Chief of Staff jointly approved the addition of a gold border to the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon to signify satisfactory participation in combat operations, reflecting the global, expeditionary nature of air power and the United States Air Force. The gold border is the same device as is used on the Air Force Presidential Unit Citation as well as many other U.S. unit awards.