Ed. note: This post is part of the Spotlight on Commerce series highlighting the contributions of Department of Commerce African-American military veterans during Black History Month.
Guest blog post by Vincent R. Gordon, Chief of the Administrative and Customer Services Division (ACSD), U.S. Census Bureau
I currently serve as Division Chief of the Administrative and Customer Services Division (ACSD) at the U.S. Census Bureau. ACSD provides administrative services and support for the U.S. Census Bureau headquarters in Suitland, MD as well as to our regional offices and others locations across the United States. ACSD directly supports the Census Bureau with property accountability and warehouse services, leasing, space management, records, transportation, transit subsidy, health unit and safety programs, conference space and management, facilities management, publications design and services as well as printing, mail and forms development. In addition, ACSD manages the Census Bureau's Continuity of Operations (COOP), the Bowie Computer Center and Sustainability, Foreign National Visitor, and Internal Use Software programs.
I was born in Pinehurst, NC, and grew up three miles away in Southern Pines, NC. I attended Pinecrest High School where I was the "Best All-Around Athlete" for participation in football, basketball and track.
I attended North Carolina Central University where I earned a BS degree in 1985 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army and served for 23 years. While in the military I earned a Masters degree in Administration from Central Michigan University in 1997. I also attended the Command and General's Staff College and graduated in 1997 and attended the Federal Executive Institute and graduated in 2017.
I am a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity where I served as President, Vice President and Secretary of several local chapters. I was named "Omega Man of the Year" twice and while in the local Maryland chapter for Omega after serving the Suitland community as a mentor where we were able to place over a dozen young men in college. I also organized the local Habitat for Humanity for the Omega Chapter in the Suitland area. I started a scholarship in honor of my mother and father, who were both educators, to recognize a graduating senior from my local high school attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). My mother and father were graduates of HBCUs. I am a member of the Veterans for Foreign Wars Post 177, Operations Security Association, and NC Chapter of the Signal Corps Regimental Association. I am the recipient of the Bronze Star from Desert Storm.
This following quote has always inspired me: "It is curious-curious that physical courage should be so common in the world, and moral courage so rare" –Mark Twain.
I see Black History Month as a time to reflect and remind ourselves of many of the influential and famous African Americans like, MLK, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman, Ali, Obama, Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, and many others who have cleared a path for successes that African Americans receive today.
I believe that our youth can achieve any goal through hard work, consistency in achievement, and some patience. Do not settle for mediocrity and find a mentor to help guide you in critical decisions and career paths.