Hispanic Heritage - “Embracing the Fierce Urgency of Now!”

Tuesday September 15, 2009

What is it?

In September 1968, Congress authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week, which was observed during the week that included Sept. 15 and Sept. 16. The observance was expanded in 1988 by President Reagan to a month long celebration from September 15 through October 15. Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15, the anniversary of independence for five Latin American countries - Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico declared its independence on September 16 and Chile on September 18.

What has the Army done?

The Army is a member agency of the National Council of Hispanic Employment Program Managers (NCHEPMs) and is represented on that Council by the Director for the Army's Hispanic Employment Program. The mission of the NCHEPMs is to provide information on employment and career advancement opportunities to Hispanics Americans, assist federal management officials in implementing a strategic and results-oriented Hispanic Employment Program and work to assure that Hispanics are employed equitably at all levels of the federal government.

The national theme “Embracing the Fierce Urgency of Now” is the basis upon which government and corporate Hispanic Heritage Month observances are designed and implemented.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

The Army’s Diversity office is working diligently to ensure that persons of all races and backgrounds are truly represented with the Army’s makeup. They will continue to recruit the best-qualified Soldiers of all backgrounds and will ensure that every Soldier is given the opportunity and encouragement to rise to his or her highest level of ability so they can be “Army Strong!”

Why is this important to the Army?

Hispanic Americans have made significant contributions to the American Armed Forces, with more than 40 Medal of Honor recipients dating back to the Civil War. During the Korean War, the Boriqueneers (Buccaneers) of the 65th Infantry Regiment, Puerto Rican National Guard, led the last recorded battalion-sized bayonet charge by the U.S. Army on two hills held by the Chinese 149th Division on Feb. 2, 1951. Hispanic Americans continue to serve proudly in the Armed Forces, at home and abroad, in the global war on terrorism.


To learn more about Hispanic Americans in the Army go to: National Hispanic Heritage Month

Related article: Celebrémos Hispanic Heritage month





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2009 Commemorations :

Year of the NCO

Year of the Military Family

100th Anniversary of the Chaplain Assistant

September 2009

National Preparedness Month

Sept. 11: Patriot Day

Sept. 15 - Oct. 15: National Hispanic Heritage Month

Sept. 17- 18: Medal of Honor Ceremonies for Sgt. 1st Class Jared C. Monti

Sept. 18: POW/MIA Recognition Day

Sept. 27: Gold Star Mother's Day


"We are the enablers, the combat support and service support forces. We are always the first to go in. We are always the last to go out."

- Lt. Gen. Jack C. Stultz, Army Reserve chief, emphasizing the important role of Army reservists during draw down from Iraq or in supporting any force buildup in Afghanistan

Citizen-Soldiers need greater stability, Reserve Chief says


Year of the Noncommissioned Officer

"I personally think of Hispanic Heritage Month as a time to look back and see the many contributions from Hispanics of all walks of life; what they contributed to our military and our country. The thing I like most is that it gets to show everyone the culture, heritages and background and we can learn from that."

- Sgt. 1st Class Frank Rodriguez, from San Marcos, Texas, assigned to Co. A, DSTB, 1st Cav. Div, one of the Hispanic Americans who continue to serve proudly in the Armed Forces, at home and abroad, in the global war on terrorism

Celebrémos Hispanic Heritage month

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