The Air Force announced Monday that Maj. Gen. Paul W. “Bill” Essex will be the new commander of the Army and Air Force Exchange Service.

Essex is now director of Plans and Programs, Headquarters Air Mobility Command, Scott Air Force Base, Ill.

In this capacity, he is responsible for force structure planning and programming, doctrine, requirements, manpower and analysis for the nation’s airlift and refueling force.

Prior to assuming his current position, General Essex was the Mission Area Director for Global Reach Programs, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington.

AAFES’ current commander Maj. Gen. Kathryn Frost will leave the post April 7 to retire, said AAFES spokesman Judd Anstey.

Until Essex’s arrival in late June 2005, AAFES’ Acting Commander will be Air Force Brig. Gen.l Toreaser Steele.

Frost is married to Martin Frost, a former U.S. Representative from Texas, who is to become a political commentator for the Fox News Channel.

Frost lost his seat in November after redistricting engineered by majority leader Tom DeLay forced him into a race against Republican Pete Sessions. He served 26 years in Congress.

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