OCTOBER 6, 2014, ARLINGTON, Va. – Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James F. Amos decided against the proposed insignia modification that would have changed the enlisted rank worn on woodland utilities from black to brushed brass, and against the proposed requirement for all officers to own and wear the Sam Browne belt while in the dress blue uniform.
The uniform board sent out a survey to Marines regarding the Sam Browne belt, the brushed brass insignia and the seasonal uniform change timing. After receiving a brief from the president of the uniform board and reviewing the survey results, Amos made his decision not to change the current regulation.
“The discussion centered around (brushed brass rank insignia) being an unnecessary change as the issue only occurs between a junior and senior Marine who aren’t already acquainted … When in doubt, a junior Marine can always address a senior Marine as ‘sir’ or ‘ma’am.’” said Capt. Tyler Balzer, media officer for the Office of U.S. Marine Corps Communication. “The (Sam Browne belt) discussion centered around the cost of the belt and the lack of necessity to add it to an already expensive second lieutenant’s uniform purchase, as well as the fact that unit supply shops typically maintain several belts that can be used for official functions,” said Balzer.
Currently there has not been a decision regarding the utility changeover dates. The decision is slated to be revisited in the future.