Reserve Categories


Reservists are a varied lot, boasting dozens of types based on rank, position, status and unit of assignment. Combinations of these variables create a unique tapestry of Airmen who work together to complete the mission. This allows the Air Reserve Component to maximize the effectiveness and range of Reservists while cutting costs and time. There are exceptions, of course, but listed below are the primary Selected and Individual Ready Reserve types available for members.


Meet the backbone of the Reserve-side of Air Reserve Component forces. Once called “weekend warriors,” these Citizen Airmen are required to serve one weekend a month and two extra weeks a year in uniform in the job of their choice and training. Like all Airmen, TR’s attend the same basic training and technical schools as their active-duty counterparts. Since 9/11, TR support of global operations has been instrumental in manpower and mission success. Without their cost-effective skill and experience, American achievement abroad and stateside could never be fully realized.


By contract, all Airmen, enlisted and officer, have an eight year Military Service Obligation. Contracts might specify only four or six-year active commitments, but if a member leaves after that active commitment and prior to their contract end, they are transferred to the Individual Ready Reserve and subject to being called up during national emergencies. Other contractual obligations beyond eight-year MSO may keep the member in the IRR longer. The Career Intermission Program provides select airmen the opportunity for a one-time temporary transition from active duty to the IRR to meet professional or personal needs outside the service while providing a mechanism for seamless return to active duty.


Air Reserve Technicians are a marriage of TR members and civil the same organization, as a civil service employee, for the same boss doing the same mission every day. Since TRs are only at the unit consistently one weekend a month, ARTs manage operations between drill weekends and other major events. Many wear their uniforms every day, but are managed via the civil service payscales, rule sets and benefits schedules. ARTs spend lots of time planning drill weekends to get the most from TR participation.


Active Guard-Reserve status is available both for Reservists and Guardsmen, and is designed specifically to create active-duty level continuity within limited base-specific jobs. AGRs enjoy full active duty benefits for limited contract periods, including medical and financial benefits. They are mostly non- eployable, and are subject to renewal based on the AGR contract. They are often coveted positions due to their benefits, but unlike normal TRs, are more subject to the needs of the service, much like active duty.

Individual Mobilization Augmentees and Participating Individual Ready Reservists are Reserve members assigned to active duty or reserve units. They fulfill point-related requirements like TRs, but create custom schedules with their units of assignment. Instead of performing their drills one weekend a month, they might combine them with portions or all of their annual tour, or fulfill them on an as-needed basis, per the needs of their unit. The IR program can be very rewarding for members but requires Airmen who are capable of managing themselves, as they often operate without the typical failsafes as other active Reserve units.