Main Post Exchange Store
Manager Renee Davis, (left to right) Miss Sparta 2008 Paige Peters
(a PX employee), Little Miss Sparta 2008 Phoenix Bartels and
Military Clothing Sales Store Manager Stacey Driggers prepare to
cut a cake at the Fort McCoy Main Post Exchange to celebrate AAFES’
113th anniversary. (Photo
by Rob Schuette)
Established July 25, 1895,
when the War Department issued General Order number 46 directing post
commanders to establish an exchange at every post where practicable,
AAFES continues to deliver a comprehensive and customer-focused
benefit to troops and their families at installations throughout
America, Europe, the Pacific and Middle East.
In addition to its flagship
main base and post exchange facilities (aka BXs and PXs), modern AAFES
operations now include convenience stores, car care centers, military
clothing sales stores, fast food restaurants, retail concession
services such as flower shops and gift stores, vending,
telecommunications support and a wide variety of personal services
through more than 3,100 facilities in 30 countries, five U.S.
territories and 49 states. The scope of current operations goes well
beyond the conventional offerings the War Department might have
envisioned in the late 1800s as AAFES even operates bakeries,
water-bottling activities and provides 24,000 meals a day to troops’
sons and daughters at 92 Department of Defense Schools in nine
Just like the merchants who
supplied provisions to America’s troops in the late 19th century,
AAFES associates continue to live and work alongside those they serve.
In fact, more than 350 associates currently are deployed to Operations
Enduring and Iraqi Freedom, actively delivering a slice of Americana
to troops through 85 BX/PX operations, 75 phone centers and 197 fast
food restaurants in the Middle East.
Closer to home, AAFES is
focused on energizing outreach efforts to communicate the value,
benefit and capabilities it brings to the military community.
Recognizing the pivotal
role National Guard and Reserve troops are playing as they transition
from a strategic force to an operational force, AAFES is specifically
reaching out to "Citizen Soldiers’" families to ensure
they understand the value of their exchange benefit not only
downrange, but also on the installation, online or over the phone.
"AAFES commitment to
America’s troops has never been stronger," said AAFES Senior
Enlisted Advisor Chief Master Sgt. Bryan Eaton. "Whether at their
home station, deployed overseas, providing support in the wake of a
natural disaster, or even in the hospital, AAFES is there."
Since its establishment in
1895, AAFES has been involved in 14 major contingencies (to include
the Spanish-American War, WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama,
the Balkans and Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom) and several
dozen humanitarian and disaster relief contingencies.