Deputy Assistant Secretary Alonzo Pena, ICE/DHS (retired) is remembered by HAPCOA

Alonzo Peña


Mr. Alonzo Peña was the President and Founder of DMEP based in San Antonio, TX. Mr. Peña previously served as the former Deputy Assistant Secretary/Deputy Director of ICE/DHS and also served as the DHS Attaché in Mexico, City, Mexico where he represented the Secretary of Homeland Security to the highest levels of Mexican law enforcement, military and political officials.

Mr. Peña oversaw and directed some 20,000 federal employees and an annual operating budget in excess of $5 billion during his federal executive career and he routinely interacted with Cabinet Level and White House officials as the ICE Deputy Director. Mr. Peña was recognized as establishing and the directing force for the now highly successful DHS Border Enforcement Task Force (BEST) initiative that brought together the combined efforts of hundreds of state, local and federal officers responding to critical incidents and security threats that arise on the highly volatile Southwest border.

Mr. Peña was a graduate of Pan American University in Edinburg, Texas and has completed additional post graduate training at the U.S. Customs Service Graduate School of Management at National-Louis University; the Advanced Executive Leadership Training Course from the Federal Executive Institute in Charlottesville, Va.; and the Senior Executive Fellowship Program at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. Mr. Peña was a member of the Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association (HAPCOA).

HAPCOA Panama Chapter: Esteban Blis (US Army-retired), Erik Moncayo (CBP/ US Embassy PTY), Tony Chapa (HAPCOA Executive Director), Alonzo Pena (ICE-retired) and Eddie Dollan (HSI/DHS US Embassy PTY).


HAPCOA LA Chapter Swears in New Board

(Los Angeles)  The newly formed HAPCOA LA Chapter held its Holiday Mixer on December 12, 2018 at the Yxta Cocina Mexicana Restaurant in Los Angeles.

Over 125 people attended this law enforcement holiday event, which included newly appointed Undersheriff Ray Leyva who served as National President of HAPCOA in 2006-2007. Other notables who attended in support of HAPCOA included: Alma Burke, LAWPOA- President, Armando Perez, La Ley, President, Jenny Wong, LEAAP, President, Chris Waters, NOBLE, President and members of the BPOA, LASD. Long time supporter of HAPCOA LA Mr. Faddoul Baida served as Master of Ceremony.  Members of the LAPD Law Enforcement Cadet program presented the Colors. 

The newly formed HAPCOA LA Chapter board was sworn-in by Judge Scott Gordon. 

Sworn in were:  Chapter President: Assistant Chief Robert Arcos, LAPD; Vice President: Assistant Sheriff Maria Gutierrez, LASD; Secretary: Deputy Sonia Castro, LASD; Treasurer: Captain Alex Vargas, LAPD; Sergeant at Arms, Captain Al Labrada, LAPD,  

Funds committed by Dr. Amed Lopez and Mr. Faddoul Baida will help the LA Chapter form and fund its Law Enforcement Scholarship program.

The event was supported by a number of employee associations to welcome HAPCOA’s LA Chapter back!  

Submitted by:
ROBERT N. ARCOS, Assistant Chief
Director, Office of Operations 

New HAPCOA LA Chapter Board Members:  Alex Vargas (Treasurer), Al Labrada (Sgt-at-Arms); Sonia Castro (Secretary), Maria Gutierrez (Vice President) and Robert Arcos (President).

Faddoul Baida, Ray Leyva, Maria Gutierrez, Gerard Orozco and Bob Arcos

LAPD Cadet Color Guard


1000 Food baskets distributed to families in our local community

(Prince George’s County, Maryland) The Hispanic American Police Command Officers’ Association-National Capitol Region (HAPCOA-NCR), the Hispanic National Law Enforcement Association (HNLEA), the United Black Police Officers’ Association (UBPOA), the Hispanic Officers Law Enforcement Association (HOLEA) and the Association Police Attaché Latin America (APALA) offer a helping hand in Langley Park, Maryland.

This coalition of minority law enforcement groups gave well over 1000 needy residents a great holiday boost when it provided much needed food baskets and bicycles during its 18th Annual Food Baskets Drive for Needy Families.  The event took place on December 14, 2018 at 8102 Tahona Drive in Langley Park, Maryland. 

Present were Deputy Secretary of State, Luis Borunda, Malcolm Augustine, Maryland State Senator representing District 47, Miguel Martinez, the president of the Hispanic Officers Law Enforcement Association (HOLEA), Vice President Miguel Rodriguez of the Hispanic Officers Law Enforcement Association (HOLEA) and other local community leaders.

HAPCOA-NCR President, Joe Perez said, “distributing over 1000 food baskets far exceeded HNLEA’s expectations, but it’s a testament to the human spirit displayed by many of our Police Officers, business owners, and the community members who now help prepare and distribute the food baskets.  For the most part the Annual Christmas Basket food drive is our primary yearly event.  Ninety percent of the donations are in the way of food from MEGA Mart a local community-based business.”

HNLEA Vice President, Miguel Core said, “I’m very happy we can help our community during these tough times.  It is especially gratifying to see the smiles on the faces of the children when they receive a bicycle for Christmas during our food drive.”

United Black Police Officers’ Association President, Thomas Boone said, “As police officers, the communities frequently sees only our tough side, the side of us responsible for enforcing laws and maintaining order.  But events such as this brings us in contact with the community’s needs and represent the positive side of what our police officers are really about.  Helping the community.”


HAPCOA Attends Research Summit on Women in Policing

(Washington DC) The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) hosted a Research Summit on Women in Policing in Washington, DC, December 3 & 4, 2018.  The summit was designed to bring together line, mid-rank and executive police officers, researchers, international experts and professional associations to explore current literature on women in policing; identify barriers to recruitment, retention, and promotion; explore the realities that women working in the policing field face; and identify promising practices for increasing representation and improving culture. 

The results and findings of the summit will be published in a special report, published by the National Institute of Justice, which will be used to chart a course for future research on the topic of women in policing.

HAPCOA National President Rich Rosa attended the summit in Washington, DC. along with Vera Bumper – President (NOBLE), Kathy Sanz – Executive Director (WIFLE) and Kym Craven – Executive Director (NAWLEE). 

NIJ offers a 3-year developmental opportunity to mid-career police personnel utilizing research as a means to communicate law enforcement policies and practices.  This opportunity is through the LEADS Scholars program and applications will become available in April 2019.  The below link to the NIJ website provides more information.

Program Activities

Scholars join the program for three years during which they:

  • Attend the IACP Annual Conference and a summer session at NIJ headquarters in Washington, D.C.
  • Meet with Department of Justice and IACP Leadership
  • Serve as NIJ peer reviewers.
  • Network with leading criminal justice researchers
  • Undertake data-driven research.  


Kym Craven (NAWLEE) and Vera Bumpers (NOBLE) with Pres. Rich Rosa

Cynthia Shain (Southern Policing Institute and ICITAP) with Pres. Rich Rosa


HAPCOA’s Ray Leyva selected to serve as LA County Undersheriff

(Los Angeles)  Los Angeles County Sheriff-elect Alex Villanueva (to be sworn in on Monday, December 3, 2018) has named Ray Leyva to become his undersheriff.

Leyva, while serving with the LA County Sheriff’s Department was elected to the Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association (HAPCOA) National Board and then served as its National President from 2006 to 2007.

Leyva retired as a Commander with the Sheriff’s Department in 2016 after 25 years of service.  Leyva had previously run for Sheriff in 2006.  He holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Pepperdine University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from California State University, Los Angeles.

Sheriff-elect Villanueva, who is Puerto Rican, served with the LA County Sheriff’s Department for 30 years before retiring as a lieutenant.

Ray Leyva, LA County Undersheriff


HAPCOA Attends DOJ/COPS Law Enforcement Roundtable

(Washington DC)  HAPCOA was invited by the Department of Justice / COPS Office to send a representative to attend and participate in its Law Enforcement Roundtable.  San Antonio HAPCOA Chapter President Chief Deputy Don Tijerina attended the event whose topic was "Improving the Identification and Reporting of Hate Crimes".  This event was held at the COPS Office in Washington, D.C. on October 29th and 30th, 2018. The goal of this Roundtable was to coordinate the DOJ's efforts to eradicate hate crimes and facilitate outreach to law enforcement agencies and the public.   

Some of the solutions discussed were to standardize the definition of a hate crime and hate crime incidents across the nation; more training on identifying and reporting of hate crimes; and the establishing of hate crimes/anti-bias/civil rights units (even if only one person) in all agencies throughout the nation.

The event was attended by the DOJ Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosentein.

Attendees included members of Law Enforcement Agencies and National Organizations.


HAPCOA Joins DOJ Law Enforcement Working Group

(Washington DC)  On November 1, 2019, The Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association (HAPCOA) was invited to join the new Law Enforcement Working Group (LEWG) hosted and organized by the Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Law Enforcement Affairs.  Steven H. Cook, Associate Deputy Attorney General serves as the Director and Chairman of the LEWG.

Participating in this meeting was Anthony Chapa, Executive Director of HAPCOA.  The meeting covered a number of topics that were briefed by senior members of the Office of Deputy Attorney General (ODAG), the FBI, Bureau of Justice Administration and COPS Office.  Topics presented include:  Updates to Assets Forfeiture, Opioid Enforcement and Prevention, Project Safe Neighborhoods, Elder Justice, FBI National Use of Force Data Collection Project, BJA Wellness Project update, and a COPS update on grants.

Also present and providing a briefing to the LEWG was Chief Tom Manger, Montgomery County Police Department and President of Major City Chiefs.

This meeting was also attended by Attorney General Jeff Sessions who presented a briefing regarding his recent visits to several US Attorney Offices. 

Associations present at this meeting included:  Major City Chiefs, Major County Sheriffs, Fraternal Order of Police, Former Narcotics Agents, Women in Federal Law Enforcement, FBI, FLEA, National Association of Police Organizations, International Police Associations, International Association of Chiefs of Police, NOBLE, HAPCOA and several others.

Attorney General Sessions and Executive Director Chapa

AG attends LEWG Meeting held at DOJ HQ in Washington DC


HAPCOA Attends National Opioid Summit

(Washington DC) The Department of Justice invited HAPCOA to attend the US Department of Justice, National Opioid Summit in Washington DC on October 25, 2018.

The National Opioid Summit presented three panels which included:  1) The Opioid Crisis: A Call to Action; 2) Enforcement: The Justice Departments Imperative; 3) The Evolution of the Crisis and Challenges on the Horizon.

Representing HAPCOA were Rich Rosa, National President and Ivan Acosta, National Vice-President.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions Opens the National Opioid Summit

DOJ Presents several Panels at Opioid Summit.


HAPCOA Officially Represented at IACP Conference

(Orlando) The Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association (HAPCOA) was officially represented at the 125th International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Conference held in Orlando, FL by National President Richard Rosa.  This year’s annual event held October 6-9, 2018 was attended by nearly 3,000 top police officials.

Many HAPCOA members who are also members of IACP normally attend this annual event but this was the first time that our National President attended officially representing HAPCOA.

Richard Rosa, Supervisory Federal Air Marshal (retired), serves as HAPCOA’s National President.  In addition to visiting with conference attendees, vendors and exhibitors he also met with representatives from various national law enforcement organizations to include:  Cindy Rodriguez, President, National Law Peace Officers Association (NLPOA), Vera Bumpers, President, National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE), Jim Hughes, Director of the North Texas Crime Commission, and Phil E. Keith, Director of the COPS Office.  Additionally, John Torres, Director Emeritus – HAPCOA, Louis F. Quijas, HAPCOA, and Rich Garcia, HAPCOA, Joe Trindal, HAPCOA and Samuel Colon, HAPCOA were also in attendance.

On Monday, October 9, 2018, President Donald Trump provided the keynote address and said “I want to express my gratitude for what you do every day, protecting our communities, our families, our streets and taking down crime”.  President Trump went on to say, “ What you do is keep America safe and no one does that better that you.  My administration always honors, cherishes and supports the men and women in blue”.

Also attending this year’s event with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, and Florida Governor Rick Scott.

Vera Bumpers, President, NOBLE; Richard Rosa, President, HAPCOA and Phil Keith, Director of COPS

Richard Rosa, President, HAPCOA, Jim Hughes, Director, North Texas Crime Commission,
Cindy Rodriguez, President, NLPOA and Rich Garcia, HAPCOA


HAPCOA attends U.S. Capitol Police Diversity Panel

(Washington DC) On September 18, 2018, the United States Capitol Police’s Office of Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Action (IDEA) held a Diversity Speaker's panel at the Capitol Police Headquarters.  The goal of the panel was to share their experiences as managers and as individuals who have influenced leadership. The panel provided information on how they managed their careers, personally invested in resources for skill development (e.g., trainings, books, videos, etc.), managed difficult workplace situations, as well as provided anecdotal advice and strategies to Capitol Police employees, which included the chief of police and his command staff.

Chief Diversity Officer, Natalie Holder moderated the event and asked a series of questions of panel members in order to create a conversation centered around diversity and inclusion.  Joe Perez, President of the National Capitol Region chapter of HAPCOA served on the panel.  Also participating on the panel were Lashinda Stair, First Assistant Chief of Police

Detroit Police Department, Eric Robins, Chief Sugarland, TX Police Department, William (“Blair”) Anderson, Chief of Police St. Cloud, MN Police Department, Dr. Timothy Trainer, President

Mount St. Mary’s University, Valerie Cofield, Deputy Assistant Director, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Cathleen English, Director

Training Services Bureau, US Capitol Police and Major Philip P. Tou, Police Services Bureau Commander University of Maryland- College Park.