The Air Force Achievement Medal (AFAM) is a decoration awarded to Air Force personnel for an outstanding achievement or meritorious service not of the same nature that warrants receiving the Commendation medal. The AFAM is only awarded to junior personnel and is most often awarded to officers with the pay grade of O-4 and below, as well as enlisted personnel below the grade of E-7. The local commanders have the authority to give this award, thus broadening discretion when and for what action the medal may be awarded. The AFAM can be given in an area of combat but only for non-combat meritorious service and it is considered to be the lower of the U.S. Military's meritorious service medals. The Air Force Achievement medal acknowledges the contributions of the junior officers and enlisted personnel who are not eligible to receive the higher Commendation medal or the Meritorious Service Medal.