Palace Chase, Front offer Offutt Airmen other opportunities

  • Published
  • By Kristen Allen, 55th Wing Public Affairs

The Department of the Air Force offers two programs for Airmen and Guardians who want to continue serving their country but want more time than active duty allows to focus on commitments, goals or interests outside the military.
The Palace Front program allows Airmen to transition from the active component to the Air Force Reserve or Air National Guard the day after their approved date of separation from the regular component. Palace Chase is a voluntary separation provision that allows Airmen to request a date of separation earlier than the one on their contract if they meet the requirements in part four of AFI 36-3211 Military Separations. Both programs are open to officers and enlisted members.
“The big thing with [Palace Chase] is that you have to already have completed half of your initial enlistment contract by the requested date of separation or two-thirds of your active duty service commitment if you’re an officer,” said Master Sgt. Joshua Marcum, an Air Force Reserve recruiter at Offutt Air Force Base. “Then they make a new request four to 12 months out from the date of their application, as long as it’s not within six months of their current date of separation. There is a stipulation on the program for how long you have to be in the reserve component.”
To help Airmen on active duty learn more about the programs and requirements, Marcum has started having briefings at the Professional Development Center on two different dates each month. Upcoming briefings are scheduled for:
  • Aug, 17 – 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.
  • Aug. 31 -  9 a.m. and 2 p.m.
  • Sept. 7  – 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.
  • Sept. 21 – 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.
“My biggest desire is for people to become familiar with the opportunities that are outside their reg AF commitment and understand that they’re not active duty commitments,” said Marcum. “This is an opportunity for someone to still participate in the Air Force and serve their country while maintaining the benefits we’ve come to enjoy on active duty and also working towards a pension they would otherwise give up.”
Staff Sgt. Ben Friederichsen, a recent Palace Chase enlistee, first heard about the programs a couple of years ago when he was deciding whether or not to reenlist.
The Palace Chase program interested me because I could retain some similar benefits as when on active duty,” said Friederichsen. “It also interested me because it gives me a chance to pursue a career in the civilian sector as well as work towards a military retirement since I have already served 11 years. Another benefit for me is it allowed me to choose the reserve base I wanted to work at, which is closer to family and friends.” 
Senior Airman Ayanna Holguin decided on the Palace Chase program to finish her educational goal.
“I am very close to finishing my bachelor’s in criminology but have had to spread out taking classes because I have been active duty so it has taken a bit longer than I would have liked,” Holguin said. “This program is benefiting me by allowing me to go to school full time this last semester and finish my bachelor’s degree one semester sooner than I would have if I was active. I am also able to focus on my passion in the civilian world while still getting to be part of the military.”
Aside from the benefits already mentioned, various types of bonuses may also be available for those looking to take part in Palace Front or Palace Chase. Those interested in the programs can contact the AF Reserve recruiters at Offutt:
Last names A-K:
Master Sgt. Joshua Marcum
Last names L-Z:
Master Sgt. Derek Dehler