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Chief of Army Commendation Regulations (current as at 18 August 2015)

DFO(A) - Defence Force Orders for the Army, Volume 3 - Personnel Matters, Chapter 16, Annex S


1. The Chief of Army’s Commendation is available to officers, soldiers, civilians, and units of the New Zealand Army whose contributions to the Army deserve formal recognition, but which may not be covered by the criteria for the New Zealand Royal Honours System. The reasons for commendation citations will vary, but only one type of commendation certificate will be presented. Nominations may be made at any time through command channels. The awards will be personally approved and presented by the Chief of Army.


2. There are three categories of citation:

a. acts of bravery and personal risk;

b. outstanding achievement and performance of duty demonstrating resourcefulness, initiative, diligence, and devotion; and

c. valuable contribution to the Army, including community service.


3. The purpose of the commendation is to:

a. provide formal recognition of personal endeavours;

b. assist in promoting job satisfaction particularly in some of the low profile appointments where valuable service can go unrecognised;

c. provide incentives to excel in order to achieve recognition, with a resultant improvement to efficiency;

d. assist in developing morale and a sense of purpose;

e. offer an alternative for rewarding efforts that may have been unsuccessful in achieving Honours List recognition; and

f. recognise outstanding achievements or special service by units of the New Zealand Army.


4. The Chief of Army’s Commendation can be awarded to all ranks, civilians, their families, and units.

Administration of Commendation

5. Recommendation Procedure. Recommendations for commendations may be submitted as follows:

a. An Individual Commendation (also see Note 1). Recommendations for an individual commendation may be made by a serving officer or soldier to the unit commander at any time. The unit commander is to initiate a formal recommendation for the award using the form LPF 12.

b. A Unit Commendation (also see Note 1). Where a sub-unit recommendation is being made the unit commander is to initiate a formal recommendation for the award using the form LPF 12A.

Note 1. Forms LPF 12 and LPF 12A can be downloaded from the Army Publications website by following the path:

Forms / NZDF Forms / Army Forms / LPF 12 or LPF 12A.

6. Forwarding of Recommendations. Recommendations are to be forwarded through command channels to Army General Staff, attention the Military Secretary. The Military Secretary is to staff the recommendations to the Chief of Army for approval within three months of receipt. An exception to this is when a priority recommendation is made, which can take a week to process.

7. Command Action. When considering a recommendation for an individual, either the Deputy Chief of Army or the Land Component Commander, within their respective commands, is to consider whether the nominee deserves a higher award and if so, take action to nominate the person accordingly. Recommendations are not to be delayed in their passage through command channels. Where an award is not recommended, the form is to be endorsed in the appropriate section and a separate memorandum explaining why the award should not be made is to be attached, and the submission then forwarded.

8. Award of Commendation. All awards of the Commendation are to be subject to the approval of the Chief of Army. The Military Secretary is to arrange the promulgation of the names of those persons or units to whom the Commendation is awarded by publishing their names on the New Zealand Army Intranet, Chief of Army’s Commendation site. Once the Commendation is approved, the Military Secretary is to raise a letter for the Chief of Army’s signature advising the recipient of the award.

9. Presentation to Individuals. The Chief of Army’s Commendation certificate to an individual is to be presented to the recipient by the Chief of Army. The presentation is to be made at a formal parade or on an appropriate occasion.

10. Presentation to Units. The Chief of Army’s Commendation and its citation, when awarded to a unit, is to be retained and displayed prominently within the unit. A dress distinction to unit personnel will not be made. The presentation is to be made at a formal parade or on an appropriate occasion.

11. Citation. An abridged citation is to be read out at the presentation ceremony with a copy of the full citation passed to the recipient after the presentation. The citation is to be a maximum of 300 words (one A4 page, Arial font 12).

12. Frequency. There is no limit to the number of commendations awarded in a year.

13. Description. The Chief of Army’s Commendation dress distinction is a crimson ribbon, mounted on a medal bar. A gold miniature Army crest is mounted in the centre.

14. The dress distinction is presented in a crimson velvet box. The interior of the box is black velvet and white satin with the words “CA Commendation” inscribed on the interior lid.

15. Method of Wear. The Chief of Army’s Commendation dress distinction is to be worn in accordance with the provisions of the NZ P23 – New Zealand Army Orders for Dress, Chapter 3, Section 18.

16. Post Nominals. The award of the Chief of Army’s Commendation or the Chief of General Staff’s Commendation does not confer a right to use a post nominal.

 This page was last reviewed 18 August, 2015 and is current.

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