Formalizing The FOD Manager Position

One of the first steps I took when I became the FOD Guy was to get recognition of my function and the authority to operate with some autonomy.

Our maintenance publication mentions that the FOD Manager’s job is a full-time job, so I worked with our manpower office to create a new manning authorization for the FOD Manager (Me). With a manpower authorization in the Safety Office, I received funding, status and recognition for my job and for those who will come after me.

Suggested Resources

Check out our articles on How To Prevent FOD at Your Airport or How to Set Up a FOD Program for more great ideas.

Here’s a suggested full-time justification breakdown of your duties as a FOD Manager:



Inform all unit agencies of FOD hazards.


Develop procedures to document and perform spot checks of selected areas each week.


Be a member of each FOD investigation and ensure that corrective actions are sound.


Manage and recommend changes (as required) to FOD Prevention training.


Ensure evaluated or repaired FOD is documented.


Periodically inspect and report damaged pavement, flight line construction or other hazards.


Recurring FOD Prevention briefings will be given at the discretion of FOD Prevention Manager.


An initial FOD awareness and responsibilities briefing will be given to all newly assigned personnel.


Analyze FOD-related mishap reports and other data for trends that identify areas for management action.


Units should establish a local FOD Prevention Awareness Award and incentive programs.


Wing FOD manager will report preventable FOD incidents to appropriate MAJCOM FOD Manager.


The wing safety office in coordination with the wing FOD manager will submit mishap reports IAW AFI 91-204.


Wing FOD Prevention committee meetings will ensure the FOD Prevention Program is sound and meeting unit needs.


Junior FOD Committee will be chaired by the FOD Prevention officer/manager.


The wing foreign object damage monitor will be designated as Wing DOPP Monitor.


If possible, training should coincide with DCC training, ground safety training, flightline safety training, etc.


Wing Dropped Object Prevention Program Monitor will report all dropped object to supervision, as required by current Air Force Regulation.


The local wing DOPP monitor will be responsible to investigate dropped objects from a transient aircraft.


I also put my earlier experience in accounting and budget implementation to good use. Do you need a vehicle? Equipment? Funding for an awards program?

Like many of you, I didn’t have a budget and was dependent on other funded work centers for all of my needs. When I asked for supplies, trip expenses or equipment, it was with fingers crossed.

Through another FOD Manager, I learned I could receive my own budget. I began by visiting the base comptroller to share my intentions with him. He had me provide a written list of anticipated expenses, which included funding for equipment, training, and awareness materials. Afterwards, the comptroller and I went to see my boss.

FOD Manager

My first-year budget was created by moving some of the money from Quality Assurance where my office had been previously and requesting the rest from the boss’s own funds. I asked for an annual budget of $7,000; I received $5,000 with a promise to increase it, if justified. In the span of just a few weeks, I had a budget on paper that was implemented the following fiscal year!

The nice thing about a budget request is that it is just a beginning. You make changes with it as you go and keep your FOD Program alive and thriving.

Another effective way to get items too big for your budget is with fallout funding. Fallout money is available to any military organization. It is based on the understanding that Federal Budget funding is awarded for use during each fiscal year (1 October through 30 September) and must be used completely.

Many organizations do not use all of their allocation. The unused money flows back to parent organizations that have a chance to re-distribute it to other needy areas. By carefully writing my justifications, I was able to get sweeping equipment and new borescopes within a couple of years.

While it didn’t happen overnight, I did eventually learn the process. If you don’t have experience in funds, it’s not a problem. Your comptroller has experience. Your job as a FOD Manager is to convince others that what you need is important enough to get should the funding become available.