The Army Commissioned Officer’s Creed: My Thoughts and Analysis

I spent about 12 years as an Army Officer and during that time not once did I ever hear of an Officer’s creed.  I have scoured the internet high and low and this is the only thing that I have found.

“I will give to the selfless performance of my duty and my mission the best that effort, thought, and dedication can provide. To this end, I will not only seek continually to improve my knowledge and practice of my profession, but also I will exercise the authority entrusted to me by the President and the Congress with fairness, justice, patience, and restraint, respecting the dignity and human rights of others and devoting myself to the welfare of those place under my command. In justifying and fulfilling the trust placed in me, I will conduct my private life as well as my public service so as to be free both from impropriety and the appearance of impropriety, acting with candor and integrity to earn the unquestioning trust of my fellow soldiers — juniors, senior, and associates — and employing my rank and position not to serve myself but to serve my country and my unit. By practicing physical and moral courage I will endeavor to inspire these qualities in other by my example. In all my actions I will put loyalty to the highest moral principles and the United States of America above loyalty to organizations, persons, and my personal interest.”

I cannot 100% verify this is the REAL Army Officer’s Creed.  Any experts that can chime in here, I would really appreciate it.  I would love to know the SOURCE of the creed, the history, and how it came about.

What I want to do in the rest of this post is “analyze” this creed and share my thoughts about it.  I hope you find the information helpful.

Army Officer’s Creed Analysis

Each line of the Army Officer’s Creed is in bold and italics.  I provide my thoughts about it immediately after it.  I have simply broken the creed down by sentence to make it easier.

I will give to the selfless performance of my duty and my mission the best that effort, thought, and dedication can provide. To me, this means putting the mission first, even above your own needs, and always giving your best, no matter the situation. 

To this end, I will not only seek continually to improve my knowledge and practice of my profession, but also I will exercise the authority entrusted to me by the President and the Congress with fairness, justice, patience, and restraint, respecting the dignity and human rights of others and devoting myself to the welfare of those place under my command. To me, this means “mastering your craft” and focusing on continuous improvement.   It also means treating others with respect and taking care of the people that you lead. 

In justifying and fulfilling the trust placed in me, I will conduct my private life as well as my public service so as to be free both from impropriety and the appearance of impropriety, acting with candor and integrity to earn the unquestioning trust of my fellow soldiers — juniors, senior, and associates — and employing my rank and position not to serve myself but to serve my country and my unit. To me, this means acting like a Soldier and leader at all times and living a life with integrity.  It means never doing anything to make yourself, or the Army, look bad.  It also means not abusing your personal rank. 

By practicing physical and moral courage I will endeavor to inspire these qualities in other by my example. In all my actions I will put loyalty to the highest moral principles and the United States of America above loyalty to organizations, persons, and my personal interest. To me, this means staying in shape, being a person of character and leading by example.  It also means being loyal to my country, the Army, my unit, and the people I serve with. 

Final Thoughts

There you have it folks.  To the best of my knowledge, this is the Army Officer‘s Creed.  Once again, I never saw this during my time as an Army Officer and I have no way to verify it.  What are your thoughts?  Do you think this is the real Army Officer’s Creed?  If so, what do you think about the creed?  Leave a comment below to share your thoughts.

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8 thoughts on “The Army Commissioned Officer’s Creed: My Thoughts and Analysis”

  1. If even as an Army officer for 12 years you never once heard of the Officer’s Creed, I have a hard time believing this is real. However, regardless of its validity, it’s really well written and covers all the points that I think a real Officer’s creed would. This could certainly serve as the official Army Officer’s Creed, assuming one doesn’t already exist. If I were a new officer, being introduced to this creed would give me a very good idea of things to come and set the tone for my career.

  2. If even as an Army officer for 12 years you never once heard of the Officer’s Creed, I have a hard time believing this is real. However, regardless of its validity, it’s really well written and covers all the points that I think a real Officer’s creed would. This could certainly serve as the official Army Officer’s Creed, assuming one doesn’t already exist. If I were a new officer, being introduced to this creed would give me a very good idea of things to come and set the tone for my career.

  3. I also couldn't verify if this was a real creed or not, but either way it's a pretty good set of rules to lead by. I have found a shorter set of rules is easier for the average soldier to understand. Somewhere between the core values and the creed.
    You're breakdown is very good. I could see sitting down a new troop and using this as a guideline to let them know what is expected of them and how you do business.

    1. Great post. The reference for this proposed creed is from a paper titled “Study on Military Professionalism.”

      “This study of military professionalism was conducted by the US Army
      War College at the direction of the Chief of Staff. The study began
      on 21 April 1970 and this report was submitted to the Office of the
      Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel on 30 June 1970.

      This study deals with the heart and soul of the Officer Corps of the
      Army. Its subject matter–involving ethics, morality, and professional competence–is filled with emotional overtones. Necessarily,
      the derivation if reliable and useful conclusions and recommendations
      involves imprecise definitions, as well as subjective evaluations and
      relative value judgments. Nonetheless, spontaneity and personal
      perception are essential to portray the prevailing climate of professionalism within the Officer Corps. While attempting to retain
      the essence of these qualities, the study was so designed as to
      minimize the intrusion of emotionalism and individual or group bias.” (Major General G.S. Eckhardt)

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