YG23 LEAD: This year group will be the first to receive additional exposure in Digital Technology (i.e. Cyber, Artificial Intelligence, Human Systems Integration, Information Technology) to enhance their Program Management skillsets!

Leadership Excellence and Acquisition Development (LEAD) 

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The Leadership Excellence and Acquisition Development (LEAD) program is the premier 24 month leadership development program offering expanded training through a series of education, leader development and broadening assignments to build skills required for positions of greater responsibility.


Key Dates

Announcement Opening Date: November 6, 2023
Announcement Closing Date: December 29, 2023
Board Review Date: January 15-19, 2024
Board Results: February 2024
Orientation Commences: March/April 2024
First developmental assignment begins: April 2024


The focus of the LEAD program is to develop high performing and high leadership potential acquisition personnel toward a future goal of obtaining an Acquisition Key Leadership Position

  • Mentors: LEAD participants, along with their parent Command and with assistance from the LEAD Program Manager (LPM), are responsible for finding mentors to assist in career development and provide guidance throughout the assignment period. A senior (GS-15 or SES) mentor is required. A roster of eligible mentors will be provided prior to Orientation.
  • TDA: LEAD participants will be assigned to a centrally-funded position on the U. S. Army Acquisition Support Center (USAASC) Table of Distribution and Allowances (TDA). LEAD program graduates will secure post utilization assignments and/or invoke organizational retreat rights to original parent organization.
  • Developmental Assignments: Lead participants shall conduct their developmental assignments in the geographic location where they are permanently stationed. One extended TDY (Not to Exceed 179 days), will be required and centrally-funded by USAASC.
  • Graduation: Graduation from the LEAD program requires successful completion of all mandatory program training requirements and developmental assignments, submission of an article for publication consideration in the Army AL&T magazine and application for consideration by the Army’s LTC/GS-14 Acquisition Key Billet Product Manager/Acquisition Director.


Applicants must meet ALL of the following requirements, at time of application:

  • Be a current Department of the Army Acquisition Workforce (AAW) member serving in a Career or Career Conditional appointment, as documented on ACRB, Section III.
  • Be a GS-13 (or high performing GS-12) or broadband equivalent.
  • DAWIA certified IAW their current acquisition career field requirements, AND DAWIA certified Practitioner in Program Management. Certifications must be documented on ACRB, Section X.
  • Applicants must have completed Civilian Education System (CES) Advanced – Distance Learning Module. Completion must be documented on ACRB, Section VI.

How to Apply

The application process is located online in the Army Acquisition Professional Development System (AAPDS). To access AAPDS, please login to the Career Acquisition Management Portal (CAMP) and click on Career Acquisition Personnel and Position Management Information System (CAPPMIS). Once in CAPPMIS, click the “AAPDS” tab, then select the “Application Module” link.

The documents identified below in the Required Application Documents paragraph must be submitted in full in order to receive consideration. All required documents must be contained in the online application tool, AAPDS, as discussed above. Incomplete applications will be ineligible.

  • Complete online applications must be finalized and submitted by established dates. Late applications will not be accepted.
  • Applications are subject to verification.

Required Documents

AAPDS pulls in the latest version of your ACRB automatically into your application. Ensure your ACRB is updated and correct prior to submission of application. Applicants may update and correct specific fields of their ACRB using the edit functions within  CAPPMIS. For the areas in the ACRB that cannot be changed by the Applicant, please request assistance using our Army DACM Office online help desk at Workforce Management Inquiring (WMI) System. Applicants will want to pay particular attention to the training, education, and assignment history sections of the ACRB, ensuring that the information is accurate. The training section should only reflect top level relevant training completed; recommend not including any DAU continuous learning modules or annual Army required training. Note: Please ensure CES Advanced – Phase I (Distance Learning) is properly reflected in your training history. You will also be required to upload a copy of your Course Completion Certificate at time of application.

The SRPE is a critical piece of the application. In accordance with Director, Acquisition Career Management (DACM) SRPE Policy and SRPE Guidance, dated July 1,  2020, the applicant’s Senior Rater (SR) is the rater of the employee’s rater. The SR must be a supervisor and senior in grade/organizational position to the rated employee.

The Command Endorsement must be prepared and signed by a General Officer or Senior Executive Service member within your command. The original Organizational Return Rights document (DA Form 5414) must be signed by the applicant and the General Officer or Senior Executive Service member of your command. Once signed, the documents must be scanned and uploaded into the online application system (AAPDS).

The forms are available to download: 

  • Organizational Return Rights *** TO OPEN THIS FILE: This is a secured file and will display in the Adobe browser extension by default. It must be downloaded to open. To download the file, click the download icon in the top right corner of the Adobe menu bar and save to your desktop. Right click the file on the desktop and select ”Edit with Adobe Acrobat”. Once it opens, click on “Enable All Features” on the yellow banner in Adobe. ***
  • Command Endorsement Memorandum
  • In 4000 characters or less, please describe your reasons for applying to the LEAD program and the benefits the Army will gain by your acceptance.
  • Clearly articulate your goals, desired career path, and how the LEAD program will help you achieve those goals.
  • Upload your resume using this format.
  • RESUMES MAY NOT EXCEED 3 PAGES and must be submitted in a .pdf format.
  • This is the applicant’s opportunity to highlight educational achievements, work experiences, skills, and accomplishments, which are key indicators to the preparation for and success as an acquisition professional.
  • Applicants should also highlight their qualities and strengths instead of listing responsibilities. Ensure experience descriptions and dates match those in the ACRB.

Selection Process

All eligible applicants are reviewed by a Best Qualified Selection Board, will will determine the suggested Order of Merit List (OML), on behalf of the Army Director Acquisition Career Management (DACM).


The LEAD Program Manager is:

Ms. Kelly Terry