The 319th "Statue of Liberty" Army Band Welcomes New Commander

By SGT Katherine Bolcar

News story photo
Photo credit: SPC Christopher Hatcher
MAJ Hayes passes the 319th guidon to the incoming Commander, CW2 Santiago.
On 02 February 2013, after more than 2 years, The 319th "Statue of Liberty" Army Band welcomed a long awaited new Commander, CW2 Luis Javier Santiago Sierra.

MAJ Trey Hayes, 99th RSC Commander, 1SG Patricia Flowers and CW2 Luis Santiago passed the guidon in Evans Hall at Fort Totten.

A native of Yauco, Puerto Rico, CW2 Santiago started his military career in 1995 at age 17 with the 248 th Army Band of the Puerto Rico National Guard. Chief Santiago then served in the US Air National Guard from 1996 to 2002 as a member of the Texas and the Massachusetts Air National Guard Bands. During that period he also toured with the Lackland and Hanscom Air Force Bands.

Upon returning to Puerto Rico in 2003, Chief Santiago was chosen as the Bandmaster of the 248th Army Band and was commissioned as a Warrant Officer upon completing WOCS at Ft. Rucker, Alabama in 2006. During his period as Commander of the 248th Army Band, Chief Santiago produced the CD recording “Recuerdos y Tradicion” with the collaboration of various Latin Grammy Artist and the Annual Veterans Concert that was broadcasted in Puerto Rico and the US in a joint effort with the US Army and various others government agencies.

Additional assignments included TAC Officer and Language Instructor for the 201st RTI at Ft. Allen, Juana Diaz Puerto Rico, Protocol Officer for the Adjutant General of Puerto Rico, and in 2004 he voluntarily participated in the activation of the PR National Guard in support of the Puerto Rico State Police patrolling high crime rate areas. His awards include the Army Meritorious Service Medal and the Army Commendation Medal

Chief Santiago is a graduate of Berklee College of Music with a Bachelor’s of Music in Professional Music and in 2011 obtained his Master’s of Music in Songwriting from Bath Spa University, England.

Currently, Chief Santiago is the Assistant Director of Admissions – Latin America for Berklee College of Music in Boston where he resides with his wife Nadine and kids Aryanna and Aleqk.

Welcome to the band Chief!!!

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