Brent A. Wilkes

National Executive Director, The League of United Latin American Citizens

Brent A. Wilkes is the National Executive Director for the League of United Latin American Citizens this country's largest and oldest Hispanic organization. Wilkes manages the operations of the LULAC National organization regarding national policy, legislative advocacy, program development, and resource development. A graduate of Dartmouth College in 1988, Wilkes majored in Government and Philosophy and studied Spanish in Morelia, Mexico. He has worked in various capacities for LULAC since 1988 including Special Projects Coordinator, Resource Developer, and Director of Policy & Development. He joined the LULAC National Office in 1996 and assumed the newly created position of National Executive Director in April of 1997. As the LULAC National Executive Director, Wilkes works to improve the quality of life for Hispanic Americans by guiding the organization’s extensive legislative, public policy, and service activities in Hispanic communities throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. Wilkes is widely credited with strengthening LULAC's programs, advocacy efforts, events and revenue since opening LULAC's National Office in Washington, DC in 1996. Since that time LULAC's revenue has tripled, staffing has grown from one to over 20, and the organization has taken a leadership role on key issues affecting Latinos in Washington and throughout the country. In 2004, Wilkes helped launch the LULAC Leadership Initiative to strengthen LULAC's programs and serves at the grassroots level. The initiative resulted in the establishment of 58 community technology centers and 80 high school leadership programs. Aside from his LULAC duties, Wilkes serves as Vice Chair of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, a nonpartisan coalition of major Hispanic national groups, which develops a consensus policy agenda and promotes public awareness of principal issues facing Latinos. He also is a board member of the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility which advances the inclusion of Hispanics in corporate America at a level commensurate with Hispanic economic contributions. As the LULAC spokesperson, Wilkes is frequently quoted by the news media and has appeared on national broadcast news programs including on CNN, MSNBC and Fox News. A recipient of numerous acknowledgements and awards, he is most proud of his LULAC Youth Advocate of the Year award presented in 2003. Brent and his wife are proud parents of two boys.