The Army & Air Force Exchange Service’s senior enlisted advisor is ensuring Soldiers and military Families stay ready and resilient with BE FIT options in Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield restaurants, Expresses and main Exchange.
During his visit to Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, Sept. 18 and today, Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Luis Reyes toured the Exchange facilities for a firsthand look at BE FIT options, dedicated to military readiness. Reyes also met with the Hunter Army Airfield garrison commander, Lt. Col. David Escobar and Fort Stewart garrison commander Bryan Logan to discuss how the 124-year-old Department of Defense retailer’s healthy initiatives help Soldiers stay mission-ready.
“The Exchange is committed to support the readiness and resiliency of Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield Soldiers,” said Reyes, one of about 30 active-duty service members assigned to the Exchange. “As a partner in the Healthy Army Communities initiative, we are leaning forward to provide better-for-you dining, snacking and shopping at Exchange restaurants, Expresses and main stores.”
All of Fort Stewart and Hunter AAFES restaurants offer better-for-you choices, Reyes said, including Qdoba, Subway, Boston Market and Panda Express. The Expresses are also stocked with healthy grab-and-go snacks such as fresh fruit, nuts, salad and hard-boiled eggs.
“The Exchange is listening to our shoppers and regularly expanding its BE FIT offerings,” Reyes said.
BE FIT is more than maintaining proper nutrition, Reyes said, noting that the Exchange has implemented an all-encompassing approach to wellness. At the Fort Stewart Main Exchange, for example, shoppers can find the latest in athletic wear, shoes and fitness gear.
“Wellness is key to resiliency,” Reyes said. “Staying active and making better-for-you choices go hand in hand with ensuring Soldiers are ready for wherever the mission takes them.”
100% of Exchange earnings support quality-of-life programs including military uniforms at cost; school lunches at cost for warfighters’ children overseas; child development centers; youth programs; fitness centers; and career opportunities for spouses, veterans and wounded warriors (the Exchange has hired 1,400 wounded warriors since 2010).
“In 2018, the Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield Exchanges generated more than $1 million combined on behalf of quality-of-life programs,” Reyes said. “Shopping the Exchange makes life better for every member of the military community.”
During his visit, Reyes also thanked Exchange associates for their dedicated service.
“Since 1895, the Exchange has provided a lifeline to America’s service members and their families,” Reyes said, noting that 85% of the Exchange’s 35,000-strong workforce has a military connection. “The Exchange is family serving family. Whether supporting troops downrange or here at Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, Exchange associates are there to serve those who serve!”