Editor’s Note: The Defense Logistics Agency recognizes Hispanic Heritage Month Sept. 15 through Oct. 15. In honor of Hispanics’ contributions to the agency’s global mission, DLA is highlighting Hispanic Americans who work daily to provide logistics support to America’s warfighters.
My name is: Douglas J. Perez Salgado
I am: The team lead in Defense Logistics Agency CENTCOM & SOCOM’s Business Management Office. I also served in the Marine Corps for over eight years. I am a native of Central America, born and raised in Leon, Nicaragua.
Describe your job in a sentence: I lead a diverse team that provides administrative support, resource management and other support services to over 200 DLA personnel located in eight countries across the Middle East and Southwest Asia as well as three locations in the United States.
How long have you worked at DLA? I have worked at DLA for two years and have nearly 18 years of active federal service.
What is your favorite thing about working for DLA? The camaraderie with people I encounter on a daily basis.
What are your best memories of working here? Every day is a new day at DLA; a new task, a new priority and a new challenge. The best memories I have of working with DLA are from seeing how much we do for our country and territories. After Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, the amount of support that DLA provided to the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other government agencies was phenomenal. The amount of coordination and manpower devoted to assist the people in Puerto Rico was top-notch. The same goes with the DLA CENTCOM & SOCOM. As the face of DLA to two combatant commands, I have better appreciation of how much we do for the warfighters. Having experienced how operations were planned and executed at CENTCOM Headquarters, I now understand how pivotal DLA is to both CENTCOM and SOCOM. Without a doubt, DLA is the “Nation’s Combat Logistics Support Agency.”
How do you make a difference? I make a difference by starting with me. I take pride in the work I do and full responsibility for all my actions. I don’t want to be part of a problem, but part of the solution. When I am faced with an issue, I use my experience and skills to understand the issue and find a suitable solution. I operate by anticipating requirements, taking actions and following through. Within DLA CENTCOM & SOCOM, I like to think of my team as family. We have to take care of each other and help each other out as much as we can.
What is one thing you’d like others to know about your heritage? I would tell everyone to visit Nicaragua, go to its beaches and explore the country and enjoy the Nica cuisine. Try the “nacatamales” or “baho,” which are beef, plantains and yucca/cassava wrapped in banana leaves and steamed over water in a large pot.
Why is it important to you that we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month? It’s important to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month and other heritages as a reminder that this country was built by immigrants like my parents. It’s great to celebrate our differences, learn from other cultures and see that in the big scheme we are “one body” composed of many different parts and organs. In other words, this country as a whole is “one” composed of people from many different places, working in harmony.