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Lieutenant Colonel

Army Colonel

O-6 Field Officer, U.S. Army
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Army Ranks » Colonel RankCOL PayCOL Rank HistoryPromotion Information

Army Promotion to O-6 Colonel

A Colonel is a Field Officer in the United States Army at DoD paygrade O-6. This page describes how the Army determines who is eligible for the promotion list to Colonel.

The same pattern of competition that applies to all officer ranks from Captain onward applies to Colonels; yet, at this rank, the competition becomes much more intense; promotion to Colonel from Lieutenant Colonel is a highly-selective process.

A Lieutenant Colonel who has served a minimum of eighteen years time in service and five years time in grade becomes eligible for promotion to Colonel, provided such officers continue to meet the physical requirements and stay out of legal trouble; although, soldiers seeking the Colonel rank do not usually see achievement of that end until around twenty to twenty-two years of service.

Colonels are selected by a board of superior offices based on the career performance as recorded in their officer evaluation reports collected over time.

Want to learn more? Read about the Army's Colonel rank on