The Bronx Chronicle Veteran of the Week

US Army | Reserves – Sergeant First Class

Ricardo Garcia enlisted in the United States Army and Army National Guard. After serving over 25 years, he retired as a Sergeant First Class.

Mr. Garcia works tirelessly on behalf of the veteran population and serves as a Veterans Coordinator at Hostos Community College in the Hostos Office of Veterans Affairs (HOVA). While attaining his undergraduate degree, he advocated for the service members and veterans of New York and CUNY. He began his CUNY journey at Borough of Manhattan Community College and left shortly after 9/11 to serve his City and Nation.

Upon returning from his deployment in Iraq, he attended and graduated cum laude from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, receiving his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science with two minors in Latin American Studies and History. Mr. Garcia currently attends the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health.

Mr. Garcia was hired as an employee by the Central Office of Veterans Affairs before he permanently landed in HOVA. Those positions allowed him to work with CUNY, developing programs that benefited transitioning veterans. Mr. Garcia was able to establish many professional relationships between the students, faculty, and employees, extending throughout all 26 CUNY campuses.

Mr. Garcia’s decision to enlist in the military came easily because he was raised in a Puerto Rican military legacy family that has a long history of service. He received numerous recognitions from the Secretary of the Army, the United States Army General Counsel, the Governor of New York and the Mayor’s Office of New York City for his actions as a first responder on 9/11 and the days following this horrific event.

He has continued to serve the veteran community through the American Legion Family as a County and Post Executive Officer. Aside from his military background, he also worked and retired from the Smithsonian Institution after 22 years.

Mr. Garcia states: “Ultimately my goal is to strengthen the already existing veteran services and expand on these services and programs to better support the needs of our veteran and military population.”


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