Governor Quinn Names First Latino to Lead IDVA

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Business

Governor Pat Quinn has appointed Rodrigo Garcia as Acting Director of the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA), replacing Erica Borggren, who will head the Illinois Department of Transportation as Acting Secretary. Garcia has served as Assistant Director since 2011, where he has presided as second-in-command of IDVA. “Rodrigo Garcia is a battle-tested, as a Marine as well as IDVA’s Assistant Director,” Governor Quinn said. “He understands first-hand what our veterans and military families go through, and he has the leadership and administrative abilities to ensure that Illinois does all it can for our heroes.”

The son of immigrant parents, Garcia hail from the historic Little Village neighborhood on Chicago’s south side. After graduating from John F. Kennedy High School, Garcia joined the U.S. Marine Corps, serving three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, earning multiple decorations. After his return to Illinois, he became a staunch advocate for student veterans, founding the Student Veterans Club at Northeastern Illinois University and rising to the pinnacle leadership position at Student Veterans of America (SVA). Garcia was a member of the Illinois Veterans Advisory Council from 2010-2011 and was recognized as the Illinois Veteran of the Month for September 2010 prior to joining IDVA.

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