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Marines Spread Message of Opportunity to Hispanic Community
by Staff Sgt. Marc Ayalin
Marine Corps News
May 02, 2005

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Representatives from the United States Marine Corps, along with top members of the national and international Hispanic community, gathered April 27, for the release of the 2005 Hispanic Yearbook at the Library of Congress.

The annual publication, now in its 19th year, is published by TIYM Publishing Company, Inc., as a resource and referral guide for and about Hispanic Americans. The yearbook includes information about prominent Hispanic individuals, organizations, businesses and media outlets, along with population statistics and resource Web sites. This year's reception attracted more than 150 representatives from the U.S. Armed Services, various government agencies, members of Congress and several Hispanic leaders representing countries such as Brazil and Spain.

The reception also marked the 10th year the Marine Corps has advertised in the annual publication, which is distributed nationally to high schools, colleges, libraries and federal and state organizations, along with many private sector minority businesses and employment contacts. The keynote speaker for the event, Brigadier General Joseph V. Medina, commander of Expeditionary Strike Group Three, explained the importance of the book to the Marine Corps and highlighted the sacrifice and achievements of individuals from the Corps' Hispanic ranks.

"This is a great proof source and I am proud the Marine Corps has been associated with this publication for the past decade," Medina said. "Our involvement in this publication really helps us deliver our message to the Hispanic community."

In the publication, a four-page layout provides brief information about the culture of the Marine Corps and how it has evolved from its birth through to the 21st Century. The layout highlights several accomplishments of Hispanic Marines to include Medina, who is the first Marine to command a Naval Expeditionary Strike Group.

Other Marines highlighted in the yearbook for their contributions to the Marine Corps included: Colonel Angela Salinas, currently the senior ranking Latina in the Marine Corps and Staff Sergeant Daniel V. Velis, Jr., a Marine recruiter in Salt Lake City, Utah.

During Medina's address, he praised the sacrifice of Marine Sergeant Rafael Peralta who sacrificed his life when he shielded his fellow Marines from a grenade blast in Iraq last November. After sharing his thoughts about Peralta, Medina emphasized how diverse cultures help to strengthen the fabric of the Corps.

"We understand the importance of diversity in the Marine Corps," said the senior ranking Hispanic in the Marine Corps. "That's why the Marine Corps is so strong... we are able to embrace all different elements of society to make the Corps a strong organization."

Currently, there is an estimated 39.9 million Hispanics in America, according to a news release from the U.S. Census Bureau. In comparison, there are more than 23,000 Hispanics in the Marine Corps, representing approximately 13 percent of its total population. The Corps' partnership with TIYM offers an excellent medium to increase the Hispanic communities' awareness of opportunities to serve in the Corps.

"The Marine Corps has always been a proud organization in the forefront of providing career opportunities for the Hispanic community," said Salinas, Chief of Staff for Marine Corps Recruiting Command (MCRC), Quantico, Va. "Through a team effort with TIYM, we can communicate to the Hispanic community that the Marine Corps is an excellent way to develop those leadership skills needed to become successful in life."

The reception began with Corporal Elizabeth A. Quinones, a Hispanic Marine from New York, singing the National Anthem and a color guard provided by Marines from MCRC. During opening remarks, TIYM's editor, Angela Zavala, expressed her gratitude to Brig. Gen. Walter E. Gaskin, commanding general, MCRC, for contributing to the success of this year's Hispanic Yearbook.
For Gaskin, the opportunity for Marines to publicly acknowledge the contributions of the Hispanic community through the 2005 Hispanic Yearbook was a significant high point for recruiting.

"Talent and the gift of leadership is not contained in any one group," Gaskin said. "It is represented across the tapestry of America and tonight is our chance to acknowledge those Hispanics who have contributed and continue to contribute to this great nation of ours."

For more information on how to obtain a copy of the 2005 Hispanic Yearbook (Anuario Hispano), visit, www.HispanicYearbook.com or contact TIYM Publishing at (703) 734-1632.

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