Officer ranks in the United States military consist
of commissioned officers and warrant officers. The
commissioned ranks are the highest in the military.
These officers hold presidential commissions and are
confirmed at their ranks by the Senate. Army, Air
Force and Marine Corps officers are called company
grade officers in the pay grades of O-1 to O-3,
field grade officers in pay grades O-4 to O-6 and
general officers in pay grades O-7 and higher. The
equivalent officer groupings in the Navy are called
junior grade, mid-grade and flag.
Warrant officers hold warrants from their service
secretary and are specialists and experts in certain
military technologies or capabilities. The lowest
ranking warrant officers serve under a warrant, but
they receive commissions from the president upon
promotion to chief warrant officer 2. These
commissioned warrant officers are direct
representatives of the president of the United
States. They derive their authority from the same
source as commissioned officers but remain
specialists, in contrast to commissioned officers,
who are generalists. There are no warrant officers
in the Air Force.
Naval officers wear distinctively different rank
devices depending upon the uniform they're wearing.
The three basic uniforms and rank devices used are:
khakis, collar insignia pins; whites, stripes on
shoulder boards; and blues, stripes sewn on the
lower coat sleeves.