WAXAHACHIE — In an attempt to send a little taste of America to those in the U.S. Army and Air Force deployed overseas, X Change, the tenth largest retail network in the world, is there to serve.
Col. Karen Bond, Deputy Director of Logistics for the Army & Air Force Exchange Service, explained how the system works and the services provided.
The X Change is an organization of 35,000 associates and 2,500 facilities all over the world which ship 36 million cases of food to the local exchanges. They are shipping American products to American service people and their co-workers. They have $8.3 billion in revenue and net $384 million in profit. They also return $225 million to the service people. The profit is used to keep up with the latest distribution technology and the funds returned to the people is used for gyms, entertainment, and other benefits.
Bond described how she is responsible for the logistics, getting all of those cases delivered quickly and efficiently. She has 350 drivers and they drive 12.5 million miles per year. Part of her job also involves oversight and implementation of technology for transportation. They aggressively use technology.
The Exchange is funded almost completely from revenue so little is needed from the federal coffers.
The best news is that Col. Bond also told us about a new service for all honorably discharged veterans. After you verify your eligibility, you can shop at any X Change. This is all new and applies to any honorably discharged veteran. Go to www.vetverify.org and you can start using an exchange on Veterans Day, Nov. 11.