LMO Survival Guide


The Legion Membership Officer (LMO), is the individual assigned to regulate and oversee all issues regarding membership, costume standards and character approval. Given the Legion consists of a very large amount of members means the LMO is in charge of a wide range of duties, extending across the entire Legion. It must be noted that this workload can seem daunting, and at times, aggravating. It is also quite rewarding as the LMO plays a heavy part in guiding the future course of the Legion membership, costume standards, and character representation.


Primary duties will include:

  • Approving characters and costumes which are new to the legion.
  • Activating new members to the Legion by listing them as approved and assigning membership numbers.
  • Approving GWL photo uploads to the Legion Membership roster pages.
  • Working with the Garrison Membership Liaisons, Detachments, and membership to update and maintain the Costume Reference Library (CRL).
  • Assisting the Captain of the Guard with membership issues and possible concerns.
  • Answering incoming LMO and Membership emails.

Essential Items

To accomplish these various tasks, a few items are essential:

  • Access to the Membership Database. This will allow the viewing of all the existing members within the legion and those applying for membership.
  • An active email account that can be linked to receive messages sent to the addresses :,, and
  • Forum accounts on each of the legion detachment sites, allowing the ability to keep up to date on new character discussions and any updated information to existing characters.
  • Patience and ability to maintain continuous communications with a wide range of legion members.
  • One of the largest items needed is: Time. The LMO position requires the sacrifice of a large amount of personal time to execute effectively.

Approval of New Characters and Costumes

  • Approving characters and costumes which are new to the legion, or have very little information within the Legion "Costume Reference Library" (CRL).
  • In some circumstances, the costume(s) will be solely under the jurisdiction of the LMO.
    • For many years, determining which characters did or did not need specific LMO approval was an inconsistent and unwieldy process, involving ever changing, contradicting, personal, and random factors.
    • In 2014 a system was established that streamlined and simplified this process.
  • In nearly all instances :
    • Those CRL entries which have very little information contained within them will require LMO approval. These entries are signified with White (non-started) and Grey (incomplete) check boxes.
  • Once an established and complete "Costume Reference Library" (CRL) entry is added to the database (ie: Green check box), those characters will now be able to have approval through the local GML’s.
  • Note: If unfamiliar with a particular character/ costume which has a non-existent or incomplete CRL entry, it will be necessary to perform research, before accepting it into the legion.
    • This is the reason it is recommended above to have registered with the various legion Detachment forums. Detachments will very likely have already existing threads on those characters in which to base the study.
    • If threads do not already exist, it will be necessary to track down the original source materials to complete the research.
  • In such cases it is recommended that user contributed sites (such as Wookieepedia) Not be used as the primary reference source.
    • Sites such as these often contain misinformation and should be used only to create a list of the original references sources.

New Membership Approval

One of the primary tasks of the LMO is final approval of applicants whom have been listed as "Ready for Duty" by their respective GML.

  • To accomplish this, first log into the Membership Database, and click the section titled "Ready to be Approved".
  • You will see all of the new applicants that are listed as ready for duty.
  • After checking that all essential information is present and correct, on the individual application, click Edit under "Membership Status" on the individual application record.
  • If ready to proceed, switch the pending member status from "Ready for Duty to "Active" and assign the membership designation number in accordance with the list of choices provided by the applicant.
    • NOTE: After a change is made in any section, click "Save" where the edit button was previously.
  • Once complete, this new applicant is now an official member of the 501st.

Costume Photo Uploads

  • Also within the membership Database is a section titled: "GWL Upload". This is the staging area where the various GWL's will upload finished roster photos for their respective members.
  • These photos will remain in the staging area until such time as they are given final approval by the LMO.
  • In most instances, giving final approval means simply clicking on the "Approve" button, thus sending the photos to the individual member roster pages.
  • In some cases it may be discovered that the submitted costume does not conform to the legion standard for that specific character.
  • If the costume is discovered to not be quite accurate, take time to inquire about the character and advise the local GML and/ or the individual applicant.

Update and maintain the Costume Reference Library (CRL)

  • Updating and maintaining the Costume Reference Library (CRL) will often times seem to be a daunting task.
  • Updating the CRL with new characters will often involve writing to those members whom submit New to the Legion characters, as they arrive, and/ or informing the local GML that images are needed to complete the library entry.
    • It is recommended that this process be performed simultaneously to the new applicant submission.
    • The longer the delay in obtaining library images and completing the written CRL text, will likely result in long term incomplete CRL entries.
  • Note: Changes may not appear on the website immediately.
    • Every evening, around 9 p.m. EST, the DB will run a automated task to process and update all CRL changes.
  • Note: Before creating a new character CRL, be sure to perform a search to determine one does not already exist for that character. There are several "grandfathered" library entries that are not shown on the publicly accessible CRL page(s).
    • These various library entries were placed into hidden storage due to the non-existence (at the time) of these characters within the legion, and as a result, the impossibility of obtaining a complete set of material for the library. These characters do however still exist within the database and may be found to have the beginnings, or partial completion, of a CRL entry.

Assisting the Captain's of the Guard

  • There will be times when the LMO is called upon to assist the Captain's of the Guard with membership issues and possible concerns.
    • This may include researching complaints or reporting on circumstances involving the membership rules and regulations.

Incoming LMO and Membership Emails

  • On nearly a daily basis there will be messages sent to the "lmo@501st" and/ or "Membership@501st" email addresses.
  • It is important to stay on top of these with replies as quickly as possible. A lack of response or a significant pause in replying to the incoming letters will result in a pile-up of messages in short order.
  • In addition, those writing for answers are most times unaware that messages are sent in from all over the world, on a regular basis, and will often feel they are simply not important enough to warrant a response from the legion.

Other Duties

There are, and will be, other miscellaneous duties that exist and will develops as the circumstances dictate.

One such example is:

Update and Maintain the Membership Staff

  • The Membership Team consists of the LMO and any needed Deputies required to handle the large workload.
  • Take care to assign and include members whom are eager and willing to perform the duties necessary.
    • Replace, add and update the team members as time and circumstances require.


Some notes on correspondence practices and procedures. These are tips that will hopefully facilitate a smooth and non-aggravating working environment.

  • Be kind and courteous when communicating concerns to others.
  • Provide solutions to any problems that may be expressed in correspondences, both to and from the LMO.
    • Remember that each member is passionate about their costume(s) and participation within the Legion. What may seem as a small concern can sometimes be inferred by the recipient as a personal burden.

A few example items to remember if encountering resistance or argument to expressed LMO concerns.

  • Inaccurate costume or costume pieces:
    • Existing costumes within the roster can not be used as a resource for new submissions.
    • Many older costumes are no longer up to current and evolving standards.
  • New applicants and existing members argue that they’ve worked long and hard on their costume, do not feel additional modifications are needed, or feel the requirements are too strict:
    • Remind these applicants and members that this is the "Definitive Imperial Costuming Organization".
    • Characters are expected to appear as if walking off screen and/ or appear as their respective source material shows.
    • Costumes are by rule scrutinized in detail.
    • Even more so if the character is new to the legion.
  • When in doubt, post a thread in the "Membership Team" section of the Legion forum.
    • It may be helpful to gather additional thoughts, opinions and support from the other members of the team.
  • It is recommended to also read the pages titled, "Costume Approval Process" and "GML Survival Guide" to gain insight on the process of general costume approval, Membership Database/ application terms, and the related membership duties of the Garrison GML position.


  • LMO Survival Guide written by:
    • Damian Jorgensen (826)
      • 2014

Revised 1-02-2015 TK826

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The 501st Legion is a worldwide Star Wars costuming organization comprised of and operated by Star Wars fans. While it is not sponsored by Lucasfilm Ltd., it is Lucasfilm's preferred Imperial costuming group. Star Wars, its characters, costumes, and all associated items are the intellectual property of Lucasfilm. © & ™ Lucasfilm Ltd. All rights reserved. Used under authorization.