Five Reasons I Love Being a Quartermaster Officer

When I was putting together my packet for OCS, I got asked what branch I wanted. I took my OSM by surprise when I asked if I could choose what battalion I wanted to belong to instead. My mentor had just taken over as the squadron commander for 1-82 CAV and I wanted to work for him while he was in command. Fortunately, there was a vacancy in the FSC for a Quartermaster officer. I was in luck! I knew that no matter what job I did, having strong leadership to learn from would make me a better officer. Here are my five favorite things about being a Quartermaster officer.

#1 I will have an easier time assimilating into being a logistics officer

Quartermaster officers have a lot more overview of sustainment and logistics. I feel like the Transportation Corps and Ordnance Corps have a lot of great things about them, but they are a lot more specialized than Quartermasters. This wouldn’t be a bad thing if we all didn’t have to go to the same captain’s career course.

#2 I learned to appreciate the value of sustainment to the operational force

Nobody wants to think about logistics, it’s boring and not very exciting to talk about. However, it’s one of those missions that is absolutely essential to succeed at accomplishing the mission. I love making sure that the ‘meat eater’ units are getting what they need to succeed, whether it’s ammo, transportation, food, or turning a wrench.

#3 My Soldiers are always doing their job

I am a distribution platoon leader, this means I am in charge of coordinating distribution of CL I, III, V and even IX (basically food, fuel, ammo and parts) items to the rest of the squadron. My Soldiers are always driving or fueling, they are never stuck on other random details. I value that they are able to always train and get more proficient at their jobs every time we come to drill or go to AT.

#4 I started my enlisted career as a Quartermaster, too

I can’t help but feel a big connection to the Quartermaster Corps, since my entire career started at Fort Lee, where I went through AIT for 92F. Even though I ended up with an Aviation MOS, being a Quartermaster is something that is a big part of my history and always will be.

#5 Having a logistics background makes you a better leader no matter where you go later in your career

Logistics will always be relevant and essential. I think that every leader, no matter what their branch, should understand this and should at least understand what is involved in sustaining the force. While not everyone should branch in one of the logistics branches, they should learn about it so they will be better off when they get promoted to positions of more authority.

Final Thoughts: I am proud to be a lifelong Quartermaster and will value my training no matter where I go or what I do.

chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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6 thoughts on “Five Reasons I Love Being a Quartermaster Officer”

  1. Some of the greatest co-workers, and leaders, that I have ever known have worked as quartermasters, or in the field of logistics. To be honest, I never quite understood precisely what their job duties entailed during their time in the service. I just know that these individuals were some of the most effective trouble-shooters I’ve ever encountered, and they all credited their logistics training for their attention to detail and ability to cover all the bases in a very short period of time. I’m really glad I stumbled upon this series of articles which provides a deeper insight into the world of quartermasters, and logistics, because it gives me a deeper appreciation for these fine individuals who have served our country proudly.

  2. Those are good reasons to love being a Quartermaster Officer. My dad was a QM Officer during WW2 and he enjoyed it. He ended up staying in 26 years and retired as a Brigade Commander.

  3. The Quartermaster Corps has a proud history. Serving as a QM Officer is an important task. There is a lot of behind the scenes planning and coordinating to make logistics happen!

  4. Candace,

    I definitely enjoyed my time as a Quartermaster Officer as a young Lieutenant. I joined the Quartermaster Corps because one of my ROTC instructors briefed me on how good of a branch it was both inside and outside of the Army.

    Within the Army, you can do tons of different things as a QM Officer. You can even fill in on Transportation and Ordnance jobs. I got to do that as a PL and it was great (assigned to a Maintenance Company). And once you hit Captain and earn your logistics branch, it’s even better. There’s nothing like being a multi-functional logistician.

    As far as life after the Army, the Quartermaster Branch gives you the skills and experience to succeed in the logistics field, which is huge. Looking back I wouldn’t change too much about my career. I’m glad to say I was a QM Officer.


  5. Candace, #4 is a great point. When I was preparing to Commission I was really considering the Corps of Engineers as in the civilian world I am a structural engineer. There seemed to be so many opportunities there, but at the end of the day, I had to go with my heart and passion, which is Armor. I was an enlisted 19K (TANKER, HOOAH!) and loved everything about it. There was no way, after some soul searching, that I could NOT be an Armor Officer. And like you said, being an enlisted Soldier in the same branch helps out a lot as well!

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