ArmyEdSpace Spotlight

Brent Wilkes, National Executive Director, The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)

Brent Wilkes
Washington, D.C.
National Executive Director
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)

Q: How did you become involved with the Army?
For years, the Army has been a strong supporter of LULAC youth programs. We are particularly proud of our longstanding partnership that empowers Latino youth with leadership skills and opportunities to help them enter college.

Q: What were you surprised to learn about the Army through your involvement?
I was unaware of all of the different educational benefits that come from enlisting and working with the Army. There are many different programs that facilitate educational attainment, with opportunities before, after, or during military service that are tailored to fit each individual.

Q: How has your partnership with the Army made a difference to your organization?
We value the commitment of the Army in helping Latino youth graduate high school and pursue higher education opportunities. We have utilized the “March2Success” SAT/ACT test prep curriculum in our tech centers across the nation because it is one of the most comprehensive, free test resources available. In addition, the Army’s support of the Washington Youth Leadership Seminar has provided thousands of young students with the chance to learn about the numerous opportunities available in Washington, D.C. while gaining valuable leadership development. 

Q: What has been your most interesting or memorable experience or interaction with the U.S. Army?
Although it is hard to name one opportunity in particular, I enjoyed our tour of West Point and seeing all of the educational opportunities offered to cadets from all over the country. Perhaps one of the most enjoyable experiences is any chance I get to listen to the Army Salsa Band that has performed at numerous LULAC conventions. 

Q: Why do you feel military service should be considered a viable post-secondary option?
Military service facilitates the development of important leadership skills and discipline that can be applied to a variety of post-service career opportunities. Many leave their military service with a better perspective and focus on their careers and now have access to the resources, like the GI Bill, to make their career and educational dreams a reality. 

Q: Why do you feel it is important to support the Army as a leader in your community?
The Army has an important history in the Latino community. For generations, Latino veterans have fought for our freedom, and some have paid the ultimate sacrifice. Over 88 years ago, patriotic Latino veterans were some of the first members of LULAC, and veterans continue to serve our organization in all capacities.

Q: How has the Army impacted your career path?
Working with the Army has given me a new appreciation of military service and respect for the sacrifices that thousands of Americans make each day to protect our democracy so that we can enjoy our freedoms. We look forward to partnering with the Army for years to come as we develop the next great generation of Latino youth.

Spotlight Archive