Michael P. Howard
Chief Operating Officer, Army and Air Force Exchange Service
The Chief Operating Officer
The Chief Operating Officer helps the Director/CEO direct the overall operation of the Exchange. The Chief Operating Officer supervises those staff elements (Operations Group) that directly support retail and service activities in the field.
Michael Howard is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Army & Air Force Exchange Service (Exchange), headquartered in Dallas, Texas. As COO, he directs overall operation of the Exchange by supervising the Operations Group and staff elements that directly support all Exchange activities. The Exchange is one of the top 50 retail organizations in the U.S. with annual revenue of $10B, employing more than 42,000 civilian and military personnel. The Exchange operates department and convenience stores, gas stations, restaurants, theaters, vending and other businesses on military installations in all 50 states, five U.S. territories and more than 30 countries.
Mr. Howard graduated from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Finance in 1976. He earned his Master of Business Administration degree from Texas Woman’s University, Denton, Texas in 2008. He has also attended the Executive Continuing Education Programs at the University of Chicago and at Darden University in Charlottesville, Va.
A native of St. Louis, Mo., Mr. Howard began his career as a part-time worker at Lowry Air Force Base Exchange, Denver, Colo. in 1972. After graduating college, he served as a Supervisory Accounting Technician for Central Area; Operations Manager at McChord AFB, Wash.; then Sales and Merchandise Manager at McChord; followed by Sales and Merchandise Manager duties at the Hanau Exchange, Frankfurt, Germany. Next, he was promoted to Assistant Main Store Manager at the Frankfurt Exchange. Mr. Howard became the Main Store Manager at March AFB, Calif.; then Main Store Manager at McChord AFB; General Manager in Colorado Springs, Colo.; and Area Manager for the Columbia Area.
Mr. Howard came to the Exchange Headquarters in 2003 as the Vice President of Real Estate; later he was the Project Retek Director. He served as the Chief Information Officer, the Chief Financial Officer, and assumed the Chief Operating Officer position in 2006.
Mr. Howard has received numerous awards and honors throughout his career, most recently including the Champion of Diversity Award in April 2012 from the Texas Diversity Council and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Logistics Association in October 2012.