AFC Warrant Officer achieves CW5 rank

By Madeline Winkler, Army Futures CommandJanuary 6, 2023

CW5 Brian Fincher speaks during his promotion ceremony.
Chief Warrant Officer 5 Brian Fincher addresses colleagues, friends and family during his promotion ceremony, Nov. 18, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama. (Photo Credit: Photo by Bryan Bacon, Missile Defense Agency) VIEW ORIGINAL

Chief Warrant Officer 5 (CW5) Richard “Brian” Fincher was promoted on Nov. 18 at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, surrounded by family, friends and colleagues.

CW5 is a rare rank within the United States Army, representing master-level technical and tactical experts. The role requires unique operational experience, top-tier leadership qualities and the ability to provide sage counsel – characteristics humbly but skillfully executed by Fincher at the Army Futures Command Assured Positioning, Navigation and Timing/Space (APNT/Space) Cross-Functional Team (CFT).

There are approximately 28,000 Warrant Officers in the U.S. Army today. Only 3% to 4% of those have achieved the advanced rank of CW5. To put that into perspective, less than 1,400 Soldiers have achieved the rank of CW5 out of our nation’s nearly 500,000 active-duty service members.

Fincher is currently on his second assignment at the CFT, where he serves as the senior technical advisor.

“I consider myself very lucky to have the opportunity to work alongside some great leaders and Soldiers throughout my Army career,” said Fincher. “It has truly been an honor to serve my country for the past 22 years and develop friendships and relationships for life.”

Fincher’s 22-year career began when he enlisted in the Alabama Army National Guard as a private first class in 2000. He attended basic training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and advanced individual training at Fort Eustis, Virginia, where he graduated as the Distinguished Honor Graduate. Fincher served just over two years in the Alabama National Guard and then transitioned to active duty to become an aviation Warrant Officer.

Prior to his arrival at the APNT/Space CFT, he served as the senior electromagnetic warfare technician at 1st Multi-Domain Command (USARPAC Theater Fires Element). His previous assignments include senior technical advisor at the APNT/Space CFT; senior electronic warfare technician at United States Army Europe; cyber branch manager/assignment officer at Army Human Resources Command; electronic warfare proponent Warrant Officer at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas; electronic warfare technician observer, coach and trainer at Mission Command Training Program; division electronic warfare technician at 25th Infantry Division; division tactical operations officer/G3 Air Battle Major (Iraq); tactical operations officer at 25th Combat Aviation Brigade and UH-60 Pilot at Fort Benning, Georgia.

“When I heard Chief Fincher was returning, I was incredibly proud to have that breadth and depth of knowledge imbedded within our team,” said Michael Monteleone, director of the APNT/Space CFT. “It was an honor to be involved in his promotion ceremony and to see him recognized for the impact he has had on his family, friends, colleagues and our Army. He brings such enthusiasm, passion and skill to our team, and I am glad to have him on board.”

Fincher credits his achievements to his support system.

“My success can be directly attributed to my family and friends and the support they provided over the years,” Fincher said. “I am both grateful and humbled to be selected as a CW5 in the United States Army, and I look forward to continuing to serve for years to come.”