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Cohen Congratulates Recruiters for Meeting Service Goals

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 3, 2000 – All services met their fiscal 2000 recruiting goals, Defense Secretary William S. Cohen announced Sept. 28.

Cohen congratulated service recruiters for making their goals in a tough recruiting climate. This was the first year DoD met its goals since 1997.

"This success, in the face of the nation's strong economy and the stiff competition from business, results from a lot of hard work and a great deal of new approaches that have been taken on the part of the services," Cohen said.

DoD officials said the Army met its fiscal 2000 recruiting goal of 80,000. The Air Force also made its goal of 34,369.

Good retention helped the Navy meet its goal of 55,000 recruits. It originally set a goal of 57,370, but the service retained more experienced petty officers than planned, so officials needed fewer recruits.

The Marine Corps made its goal of 33,367 recruits. The Marines have been the only service to consistently make their recruiting goals, DoD officials said.

"Meeting our recruiting goals reflects a combination of measures," Cohen said. He listed putting more recruiters on the street, new advertising initiatives and higher enlistment bonuses as important to manning the force.

"But most of all, I believe that this success reflects a determination, certainly from my office and the service secretaries, to make recruiting a top priority," Cohen said.

He said the impact of the biggest pay raise in a generation, pay table reform and changes to military retirement is being felt in the force. "Better support for our men and women in uniform is producing a more stable and a more experienced force," he said.

Cohen noted that recruiting "is always going to remain a challenging endeavor, as long as growing businesses are trying to hire the very high quality men and women who defend America today."

In fiscal 2001, the Army goal is to recruit 76,000 to 79,000 enlistees by Sept. 30, 2001. In the Navy, the number is 56,348. The Air Force will look for 34,600 recruits and the Marine Corps will need 39,888.

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