O-8 loses command for using clout to help son

Discussion in 'Academy/Military News' started by Luigi59, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    O-8 loses command for using clout to help son
    By Scott Fontaine - Staff writer
    Air Force Times

    Monday Mar 14, 2011 6:06:26 EDT

    Allan Poulin Jr. dreamed of flying a fighter and landed a job interview with an F-16 reserve unit. The squadron leadership didn’t want him. The wing commander offered Poulin a job anyway.

    Poulin struggled at Officer Training School. The school commander signed off on his dismissal. A one-star ordered him reinstated.

    Next came undergraduate pilot training. Poulin finished last in his class and was told to report to the squadron that trains cargo and tanker pilots. He reported to the fighter track.

    Behind each move, Poulin’s superiors saw the influence of his father — Maj. Gen. Allan Poulin, vice commander of Air Force Reserve Command. It was interference that ultimately forced the two-star to retire.

    An anonymous tip touched off an investigation by the Air Force inspector general into what role Poulin was playing in his son’s career.

    The investigation’s findings, released to Air Force Times earlier this year through the Freedom of Information Act, show the general’s hand guiding his son’s career at every turn.....

    Read the rest HERE
     
  2. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    That must have been really annoying to see before they got in trouble for it. I know some people who get far on their parents, it is annoying. I am glad to see this time they were caught for it.
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    RAND did a study about 15 yrs ago and shockingly they found out that nepotism exists in the military.

    I agree, I am glad that they stepped up to the plate and called them out.
     
  4. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    I've seen the effects of being the "General's kid" before. I have no idea how intentional it was.

    I've also heard of a 4-star's kid being removed from a commissioning program (and the 4-star completely agreed).
     
  5. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    Graduating Tech School. FIGMO. Guy in class gets Bermuda as initial assignment. Congratulations all around. Guy in class gets South Korea. Guy in class with Bermuda is told (not ordered) to report to assignments before leaving and bring his orders. There was a "mistake". SSgt. tells him to get on first available and report in @ Bermuda with his valid orders. "What are they going to do? Send you back?" South Korea assignment was son of Full Bird.:rolleyes:
     
  6. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Knew Vice Adm. Pekoske's son. He was two years behind me. We had no idea his father was a 1-star, 2-star and then 3-star. Kid never let on. I talk to his father later and told him we respected that, and he told me his son didn't even tell him he was applying to CGA....just did it and told his father afterword. That's classy.
     
  7. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    You can put silk on their a** but that don't give them class. Reference "Jersey Shore". :rofl: That was a class act by that kid and I hope he goes far. :thumb: By the way. How short are you LITS? Need a ladder yet to get in the bunk?
     
  8. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    My father was a 1-star while I was a cadet...the only time anyone knew was when he showed up, unexpected, to visit...

    Glad to say he NEVER interfered...

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  9. osdad

    osdad Member

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    I recall one kid who advanced pretty well even though he was 894 of 899 at NA. But then again he was, to quote Jimmy Buffet, "The son of a son of a sailor." :biggrin:
     
  10. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    Interviewed a kid last year. His dad was an active duty Navy 1-star. The kid didn't mention it and his dad didn't mention it (I talked to him before the interview).

    There are execeptions, but I think there are less and less nepotism in the military than before.
     
  11. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    OK, let me talk about this whole "nepotism" concept in regards to the military.

    I've seen LOTS of examples of officers who have followed a family member (or two, or several) into the military, either as children of high ranking military members, or nephews / nieces, or in-laws (married a General's daughter) or a multitude of other examples. I've seen very good examples (including being a crew-member of a guy whose father was VERY high in the AF structure, great individual), and i've seen some rather poor examples (up to the level of this example in question).

    But I want to address this image of "nepotism". Do I think some nefarious conspiracy exists that protects the children of high ranking officers as they go on to their own careers? No. But do I also see these sons and daughters of Generals and Colonels usually have better "success" rates than their peers? Well, I'd have to say "yes" to that.

    And here's why. They have an "Advantage" over their peers. Someone who "made it" and can act as their own private mentor as they progress during their careers, giving advise and oversight as to what to strive for, how to succeed, and what goals to set. Actually, you'll find that behind almost EVERY Colonel and General is a mentor they found and trusted for advise as they progressed during their careers. some were lucky to have some person just above them in rank they made friends with early in their careers who provided that "mentorship", and as they achieved higher and higher ran, the mentoree rode along. Some were lucky enough to have that "mentor" right off the bat in the form of a relative or family friend who was already serving, sometimes at pretty high rank.

    The vast majority I've exerienced don't ride on their Daddy's or Mommy's rank up the ranks themselves (and would rather fly under the radar like the example mentioned by LITS and a few others). In fact, they REFUSE to ride that path, and like a few mentioned, they gain respect for that. But don;t fool yourselves, they still have an advantage. The General Officer's club is very exclusive, very small, and VERY aware of each other. And while a GO may not interfere in any way with their child's progress in his/her career, and is usually completely out of their chain of command, the GO IN their chain of command is AWARE that General so-and-so's son / daughter is under their command. They don't get special opportunities, but they do get increased ATTENTION. It's up to the individual as to what they do with that attention; do well under the microscope, and naturally they will be rewarded with more oppotunities. Fail, and it's failure under the microscope, and all that entails.
    Getting that attention is something everyone will eventually need to get to the really high ranks, usually just as much as a good mentor. The children of GOs are just lucky enough that they don't have to struggle to get that attention as the rest.

    Am I bitter about this? Not in the least (like I said, the majority I've met were great persons themselves).

    Just identifying the advantages they have. Advantages many of their peers will not have. And these advantages usually lead to success...
     
  12. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Excellent post and point Bullet. There is definitely a difference between nepotism and having advantages. While I definitely will not be able to have any influence over my son's future, some people thought that because I was working as/with an ALO, that my son somehow was given a better chance at receiving an academy appointment. Also; because his ALO was also my Commanding Officer and I was her 1st Sergeant when we were both on active duty. (We're both retired now). I explained that they don't even allow an ALO to handle their own child's application. Also a reason I wasn't an official ALO in the 2005-2008 time frame. I didn't want there to even appear to be any nepotism or special treatment. And there wasn't.

    BUT; did my son have an "ADVANTAGE"? Most definitely. Does a child who's parent happens to be a school teacher have an advantage with academics? My son definitely had some advantages in the Academy Application process. Did I do his application for him? No. Did I contact the academy with questions or concerns? No. But am I expected to keep my knowledge from him? No to that too. Just like when applicants call me with questions, I help them out. Well; my son happened to have my undivided attention. As such, when he read the application form and it recommended completing the application in 45 days or less; he knew he could do that. He knew the process better than most applicants. Basically all the information that is provided on this forum by myself, Flieger, other ALO/MALO/BGO, as well as from cadets who have been through the process before and/or parents; my son happened to have that information already at his disposal all the time. Matter of fact; he had that information available for a number of years prior to him even applying to the academy. Also; being retired myself, and him being a dependent, meant he could go on base easily and see his ALO, go to the base gym at anytime and get his CFA completed, etc...

    So; did my son have advantages because of me and my position and past? Most definitely. He was able to complete his application in less than the 45 days they suggest. He was able to have someone review it at numerous stages to ensure that it was the best written application he could present. But in no way did he receive an appointment to the academy because of me or anything I did. And once those who thought that he did have some "PULL" because of me, (Usually parents of applicants who didn't receive an appointment), find out that he was ranked #1 out of 455 in his high school; never had a gpa LOWER than a 4.0. Was in the IB program and still could be a 3 sport athlete and varsity captain, etc... Then they tend to back off. But there is an initial belief that nepotism is an automatic; instead of just an advantage.

    I think it's terrible that a parent/family member would use their position to get their child/family member opportunities and rewards that they don't deserve based on their own merits. But it is totally acceptable that such a parent/family member should use their knowledge, experiences, and skills to give their child/family member additional tools to be an advantage.

    Great post Bullet. Definitely a big difference between Nepotism and Advantages.
     
  13. kp2001

    kp2001 USMMA Alumnus

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  14. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    I did not know he was in Afghanistan, but I did know he was in the Army. His son turned down West Point and went to MIT - graduated and commissioned in 2009.
    Did you know that his wife Holly was the daughter of the Superintendent of West Point while Petraeus was there? She was home from college for a visit and they met on a blind date.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 16, 2011
  15. jwalsh1

    jwalsh1 Member

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    @Christcorp:

    With those advantages, you can say the same things about a second child going through the process. Except maybe the going on base part. Ever since I got my appointment for the prep school this year, my mom has been calling me non-stop asking me how to get it done for my little brother. I keep having to remind her, however, that my process was a little different because I'm enlisted and he's in high school.

    Actually, my group commander's son is applying for the academy this year. We have the same ALO and everything. I don't think that he will have any extra pull because his dad is a full bird. I do think that his dad knew how to help him word the application and had him on the right track for a while now. He is also the second child to apply (his older sister is going to be a Jr this year).

    I really didn't have any pull from my family. My dad was an E-4 in the Marine Corps when he got out. I'm an E-3 in the Air Force now. I grew up with his enlisted stories.
     
  16. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    Too bad the father in this case wasn't a Senator. That would have made it OK. :rolleyes:
     

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