The Foundation for Our Future

Letter from the Postmaster General and CEO, and the Chairman of the Board of Governors

photo of PMG John Potter

John E. Potter

Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer

photo of chairman, board of governors, louis giuliano

Louis J. Giuliano

Chairman, Board of Governors

To the President, members of Congress, postal customers, postal employees, and the American people:

This past year has been a pivotal one for the U.S. Postal Service, as we have set about the ambitious task of turning a financial crisis of significant proportions into an equally sizable opportunity. While we continued to contend with the significant marketplace and financial challenges that began with the 2008 economic recession, in this past year we took significant steps to lay the foundation for an historic redirection for the organization.

Our work began in earnest early in the fiscal year by asking fundamental questions about trends in America’s use of the mail, and what the future holds for our business. We commissioned independent projections and analyses, which described a marketplace increasingly migrating to digital means of communication, a steady decline in mail volumes through 2020, and a less profitable mix of mail in coming years. Indeed, without significant productivity improvements and changes to our current business model, the Postal Service could face a cumulative $238 billion shortfall in the coming decade.

Our response to this challenge was to set forth an aggressive and balanced plan that envisions significant changes to our business model, enables the Postal Service to continue to play its vital role in the American economy, and our communities, and to deliver great value to business and residential customers. We also committed to engaging the American people in a dialogue about our plan and our future.

We began this dialogue in early March, when we released: Ensuring a Viable Postal Service for America: An Action Plan for the Future. This document set out our goals for cost-cutting, increased productivity, product and service offerings, and identified legislative and regulatory changes necessary to ensure our future viability and a return to profitability. Most importantly, it set the foundation for a more competitive, market-responsive organization, better able to meet the evolving mailing needs of the American people.

Since March, we have continued to communicate about our plan, and we have made meaningful progress in a number of areas.

The first steps in a new direction are often the hardest, and success tomorrow depends upon our willingness as an industry to take those initial risks today. We are committed to our vision of a more nimble, competitive and financially sound Postal Service, an organization that will endure as a cornerstone of American society, providing unparalleled service through “snow, rain, heat and gloom of night” for generations to come.

“Since March, we have continued to communicate about our plan, and we have made meaningful progress in a number of areas.”