El Paso, Texas , United States
|| November 10, 1944
Jul 18, 2011 04:15pm
Hispanic - Married - Army - Catholic - Christian - Straight -
|Info||Congressman Silvestre Reyes was first elected to the United States Congress in 1996, becoming the first Hispanic to represent the people of the 16th District of Texas. On January 6, 2009, Congressman Silvestre Reyes, was sworn into the 111th Congress by Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, for a seventh consecutive term in the United States House of Representatives. |
Congressman Reyes serves as the Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the primary committee in the U.S. House of Representatives charged with the oversight of the United States Intelligence Community, including the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and other executive branch departments and agencies.
Reyes has devoted his life to public service. He first served his country in the United States Army in Vietnam from 1966 - 1968, and served as a helicopter crew chief. In 1969, he began his career with the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), now known as Customs and Border Protection (CBP), in the U.S. Border Patrol.
After serving as an agent, immigration inspector, and instructor at the Border Patrol Academy, he was promoted in to Assistant Regional Commissioner in Dallas, Texas, where he served for five years and was responsible for administering a budget exceeding $100 million in 13 states. In 1984, Reyes was named Sector Chief of the U.S. Border Patrol, and managed operations in McAllen and El Paso, Texas from 1984 to 1995.
Reyes quickly became known as one of our government's strongest and most effective innovators in border security. In McAllen and El Paso, Reyes initiated forward-thinking programs such as “Operation Hold the Line,” the Border Patrol's Canine Program, and the Border Patrol's National Anti-Drug School Education Program. “Hold the Line” continues as part of the Department of Homeland Security's Bureau of Customs and Border Protection strategy for the entire Southwest border and earned Reyes recognition from the White House, the United States Congress, the Department of Justice, and others.
Known as "Silver" to his friends, Reyes retired in December 1995 after 26 ½ years with the Border Patrol and in was elected the following year to represent the people of the 16th District of Texas in the United States House of Representatives.
Reyes arrived in Washington in 1997 with a plan to provide leadership on border issues, improve and enhance education in El Paso, protect veterans' benefits, and support our nation’s defense by enhancing El Paso’s regional military facilities -- Fort Bliss, White Sands Missile Range and Holloman Air Force Base.