Exchange Director/CEO focuses on making Soldiers' lives better at USAG Yongsan
USAG YONGSAN --Army & Air Force Exchange Service Director/CEO Tom Shull is working to ensure Soldiers and their families at U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan receive an exceptional shopping experience as troops move to USAG Humphreys.
"The Exchange values its place as part of the Yongsan community," Shull said."The Exchange team appreciates all that Soldiers and their families sacrifice, and their sacrifices inspire us to work even harder to serve them."
To understand how the Exchange can best meet the needs of the community, Shull and Exchange Senior Enlisted Advisor Chief Master Sgt. Sean Applegate toured Yongsan Exchange facilities, including the main store, main food court, MP Express, Military Clothing and Four Seasons on Sept.18. They also visited the South Post food court and Express; Gallery concessions mall; and the Dragon Hill Lodge Express and Pizza Hut/Subway.
During their visit, Shull and Applegate met with Exchange associates and discussed how the Exchange can continue to serve Soldiers and their families, even as operations are scaled back in anticipation of the transformation and relocation to Humphreys.
"The Exchange wants to deliver the highest level of service to Soldiers and their families," Shull said. "We are committed to maintaining the level of support at the Yongsan Exchange."
Shoppers can find national brands at the Exchange, includingMichael Kors , Ralph Lauren, Bose and GoPro, at competitive prices, Shull said.
"The Exchange is going after a tremendous number of premium brands, and we're dedicated to delivering a modern shopping experience," he said. "Our prices are extremely competitive, and shopping with the Exchange is always tax-free. That's a win-win."
As the Yongsan population declines, the Exchange has a detailed plan to ensure those who remain are taken care of. The first major Exchange facility to close was the furniture store. As a result, the Exchange team developed a plan to bring furniture sales to the Four Seasons site, which also houses hardware, pets, toys and Outdoor living.
If Soldiers can't find the products they need at the Yongsan Exchange, they can visit shopmyexchange.com, which has been improved to make shopping and order fulfillment easier, Shull said.
Whether shopping the Exchange in-store or online, Shull said, Soldiers do more than save sales tax. Money from every purchase goes back to improving their quality of life.
"For every dollar earned, historically 67 cents comes back to the military community to support quality-of-life programs," he said. "In 2015, sales at the Yongsan Exchange generated more than $1.5 million on behalf of these programs. Every time shoppers buy from the Exchange, they are making life better for their entire military community."
Across the world, the Exchange is committed to treating Soldiers and their dependents like family.
"Since 1895, the Exchange has provided a lifeline to America's Soldiers and their families," Shull said. "About 85 percent of Exchange associates have a connection to the military. The Exchange truly is family serving family."
Shull is the first civilian to lead the 121-year-old organization, which employs 35,500 civilian associates worldwide. In addition, 35 active-duty service members are assigned to the Exchange.
For more information about the Exchange and Exchange programs, visit shopmyexchange.com.