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José L. Santiago

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Jose Luis Santiago
SgtMaj Jose L. Santiago, USMC.jpg
Sergeant Major Jose Luis Santiago
Born1960 (age 60–61)
San Juan, Puerto Rico
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchSeal of the United States Marine Corps.svg United States Marine Corps
MarforresLogo.jpg United States Marine Corps Reserve
Years of service1982-2012
Sergeant Major
Commands heldSergeant Major Recruiting Station Jacksonville, FL 2nd Battalion 9th Marines
Battles/warsOperation Desert Shield
Operation Desert Storm
Iraq War
AwardsMeritorious Service Medal w/gold star, Joint Service Commendation Medal,
Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with two gold stars and Combat Distinguished Device Combat Action Ribbon with gold star

Sergeant Major Jose Luis Santiago (born 1960 in San Juan, Puerto Rico) is a retired member of the United States Marine Corps who has the distinction of being the 2nd Battalion, 9th Marines' first Hispanic Sergeant Major and its first Sergeant Major since its reactivation on July 13, 2007. Was assigned to the Marine Corps Recruiting Command Recruiting Station Jacksonville, 6th Marine Corps District

Military career[edit]

After graduating from boot camp at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, he was sent to Infantry Training School at Camp Geiger, North Carolina to further his specialized training in his assigned Military Occupational Specialty of Mortar man (MOS 0341). In July of that year, Santiago was sent to Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton in San Diego, California where he attended Sea School.

On August 21, 1982, he reported to Marine Detachment USS Holland at Charleston, South Carolina. He was a Nuclear Security sentry and eventually acted as the Sergeant of the guard. Some of his duties included the security for SSBN submarines maintenance of Trident Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles. During this time, he was able to attend the Army Airborne course and NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer) School at Parris Island.[1]

Santiago was reassigned in 1984 to Headquarters & Service Company (H&S Co.), 8th Marine Regiment at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina as the Training and Directives NCO. He received his honorable discharge from the Marine Corps in March 1985.

As a Reservist, Santiago was assigned to the Beach & Port Company, 4th Landing Support Bn of San Juan, Puerto Rico as a member of the Marine Corps Reserves.

Only enlisted personnel to attend the Infantry Officer Course Class 2-97[edit]

From 1994 to 1999, Santiago served in various assignments to undertake more military courses. He served in the 4th Marine Regiment Reconnaissance Platoon of the 3rd Marine Division and Reconnaissance Company, HQBN, 3rd Marine Division participating in several theater training operations. He attended the Helicopter Rope Suspension Training course with the III MEF Special Operations Training Group and in January 1997, then SSgt Santiago, volunteered to attend the Infantry Officer Course being the only enlisted personnel in the course while assigned to Advanced Infantry Training Company, SOI(W), Camp Pendlenton, CA. He was promoted to Gunnery Sergeant in August 1998.[1]

In April 1999, he had orders to report to the Military Group, U.S. Embassy at Santiago, Chile for duties with the Naval Section as an SNCO Personnel Exchange Program (PEP) with the Chilean Marine Corps assigned to the Chilean Marine Corps School of Infantry as an instructor in the Chilean Marine Corps Commando course. During this tour he was awarded the Chilean Marine Corps Parachutist badge after graduating and conducting multiple military jumps with the host nation.

In August 2001 he returned to Camp Pendleton, CA for duty with the 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division and was assigned as the Operations Chief of Company B until his selection to First Sergeant in March 2003, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom & Operation Iraqi Freedom. In Feb 2004, his Battalion again deployed in support of OIF II as Company B First Sergeant.

In Jun 2005, he was assigned as the First Sergeant of the Inspector-Instructor Staff, Naval Activity Puerto Rico in support of the 3rd Longshoreman Platoon, 4th Landing Support Battalion, 4th Marine Logistics Group. He was promoted to his present rank on the last day of his tour overseas 1 April 07.[1]

Sergeant Major[edit]

On July 13, 2007, 2nd Battalion 9th Marines was re-activated and replacing the Anti-Terrorism Battalion (ATBN). Sergeant Major Jose L. Santiago has the distinction of being the 2nd Battalion 9th Marines first Hispanic Sergeant Major and its first Sergeant Major since its reactivation.[2]

April 2007 he was ordered to report to Anti-Terrorism Bn, 2d MarDiv which then became V29, 2nd MarDiv as the Battalion Sergeant Major on April 7, participating on an OIF deployment from September 2008 to April 2009 at Al Ramadi, Iraq.[3]

Sergeant Major Santiago was assigned to report to Recruiting Station Jacksonville, Florida on Mar 2010 to become the Recruiting Station Sergeant Major and retired the USMC in June 2012 after 30 years of honorable and faithful service. Back in civilian life José L. Santiago had worked as a Veteran Service Representative at the Veterans Benefits Administration VBA, San Juan Regional Office[4][5]

Military awards[edit]

  • Meritorious Service Medal ribbon.svg  Meritorious Service Medal
  • Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal ribbon.svg  Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal
  • Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal ribbon.svg  Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
  • Combat Action Ribbon, 2nd award.svg  Combat Action Ribbon w/1 gold star
  • United States Navy Presidential Unit Citation ribbon.svg  Navy Presidential Unit Citation
  • U.S. Navy Unit Commendation ribbon.svg  Navy Unit Commendation
  • Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation ribbon.svg  Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation
  • U.S. Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal ribbon.svg  Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal
  • National Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg  National Defense Service Medal w/1 service star
  • Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg  Iraq Campaign Medal
  • Southwest Asia Service Medal ribbon.svg  Southwest Asia Service Medal
  • Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal ribbon.svg  Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
  • Global War on Terrorism Service Medal ribbon.svg  Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
  • Navy and Marine Corps Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.svg  Sea Service Ribbon
  • Navy and Marine Corps Overseas Service Ribbon.svg  Navy and Marine Corps Overseas Service Ribbon
  • Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia) ribbon.png  Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)
  • Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) ribbon.png  Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait)


  • NavJumpWings.jpg  Navy and Marine Corps Parachutist Badge

See also[edit]

Other articles of the topics Biography AND Puerto Rico : Luis F. Castro, Angel Mendez, Orlando Fernández, Steven Ehricks, Ramón Núñez-Juárez, Lizbeth Robles, Rafel Toro

Other articles of the topic Biography : Nicholas Loncar, Boone Guyton, Andrew Jackson Gandy, Rachel-Lee Anderson, Pietro Cugini, Lorenzo Mark Vicente, Louis J. Carpellotti

Other articles of the topic Puerto Rico : Steven Ehricks, Puerto Rico Highway 9974, Enrique Romero-Nieves, Frances M. Vega, Orlando Fernández, César Luis González, Carmen Lozano Dumler
Some use of "" in your query was not closed by a matching "".Some use of "" in your query was not closed by a matching "".

  • List of Puerto Ricans
  • List of Puerto Rican military personnel
  • 2nd Battalion, 9th Marines
  • Hispanics in the United States Marine Corps


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Sergeant Major Jose L. Santiago — Sergeant Major, 2d Battalion, 9th Marines". II MEF, United States Marine Corps. Archived from the original on 2008-04-23. Retrieved 2008-01-01. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  2. Hispanic Facts of the Day
  3. Marines return home after deployment
  5. Jose L. Santiago-Facility Operations Assistant at VA Caribbean Healthcare

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