'A Lifeline to Home': AAFES Senior Enlisted Advisor's visit spotlights Exchange support at Spangdahlem AB

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  • By Marisa Conner Army & Air Force Exchange Service Public Affairs
  • Army & Air Force Exchange Service Public Affairs

The Army & Air Force Exchange Service’s senior enlisted advisor visited Spangdahlem Air Base for a firsthand look at how the Exchange is supporting Airmen and families overseas.


During his visit to Spangdahlem AB, Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Kevin Osby, along with the Exchange’s Europe/Africa/Southwest Asia Senior Enlisted Advisor Sgt. Maj. Jason Urquhart, toured Exchange stores and met with 52nd Fighter Wing Command Chief Master Sgt. Toby Roach and 52nd Mission Support Group Deputy Director Russell Oster on March 23 to discuss how the Department of Defense retailer can improve the quality of life for the community.


“The Exchange brings a taste of home to those far from home,” said Osby, one of about 30 active-duty service members assigned to the Exchange. “Having easy and affordable access to familiar and favorite brands in Exchange stores, on-base services like the barber shop and alterations at the Exchange mall and first-run American movies at the Exchange Reel Time Theater makes life better for Spangdahlem Airmen and families.”


Recent improvements at Spangdahlem AB include the opening of Dunkin’ last year and an upgrade of the food court Subway. The Exchange also added more food trucks to the rotation, increasing variety and options for the community. The Popeyes will be renovated this summer, and shoppers will have the option of self-checkout at the Exchange later in the year.


“It matters where you shop,” Osby said. “Small changes can make a big difference in a community.”


During his visit, Osby thanked Exchange associates for their dedicated service. The Exchange is committed to hiring heroes. The Exchange gives hiring preferences to Veterans and military spouses and offers a transfer program, allowing military spouses to keep their careers through PCSs.


“Spouses and families are a vital part of the military community and the Exchange family,” Osby said, noting that 85% of the Exchange’s 28,000-strong worldwide workforce has a military connection. “The Exchange’s Associate Transfer program enables associates to keep their current benefits, build retirement benefits and pursue a meaningful career throughout all the moves and changes that military life entails.”


The Exchange also serves the children of Spangdahlem Airmen through the School Meal Program. Last year, the Exchange provided 4 million nutritious meals to students at DoD Education Activity schools overseas.


Shopping the Exchange—whether in person or at ShopMyExchange.com—supports the military community. 100% of Exchange earnings are reinvested in the military community through funding for critical Quality-of-Life programs, as well as capital improvements. In the last 10 years, the Exchange worldwide has contributed $3.5 billion in earnings.


“The Exchange is a lifeline to home for overseas troops,” Osby said. “No matter where you are serving, the Exchange is there for you.”