Keynote Speaker/Closing Session/Friday, November 10, 2017
Sergio A. Tinoco, author, Army veteran, and former migrant child, was the only child of his single mother and was raised by his maternal grandparents in the Rio Grande Valley. As a child, he persevered through many struggles, including being a migrant worker picking crops at the age of seven. As a way to break from the family cycle of picking crops and depending on government welfare programs, he joined the United States Army. Sergio began to live a dangerous life in the battlefield with the US Army. He deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina shortly after the Bosnian War only to find and deal with the aftermath of the genocide that took place there and be caught in the middle of several attacks. His experiences in Bosnia ultimately led to experiencing signs and symptoms related to PTSD. After completing ten years of active military service, Sergio joined the US Border Patrol. Being of Mexican descent and having family in South Texas and in Mexico gave way to a new issue of having to counter threats against his family, in addition to ill-willed opinions of him for arresting and deporting “his own kind.” Between the Army and the Department of Homeland Security, Sergio has worked in government service for over twenty years. He earned both a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in organizational management from Ashford University. His wife, Estela, also a military veteran, works for the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Together, they strive to provide greater opportunities and aspirations to their children. More information can be found at: www.proudamericanjourney.com. A limited number of Sergio Tinoco’s book Proud American Journey will be available for purchase ($20) following his keynote address. He will also be available to sign them.