Mercado, a 2004 distinguished military graduate of The U, is an operations officer with the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment in the United States Army where he assists in the development of plans and training for future combat deployment. Since receiving his commission in 2002, Mercado has served as an anti-armor platoon leader, a battalion heavy mortar platoon leader and as the operations advisor on Military Transition Team 0652 in Baghdad, Iraq.

In his nearly six years of active duty, Mercado has earned several military awards and decorations, including the Bronze Star, Ranger Tab, Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Parachutist’s Badge, Army Achievement Medal (five awards), National Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Medal (two awards), Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the Iraqi Campaign Medal. A native of San Antonio, Texas, Mercado is married with two children.

For more information about this event, which is free and open to the public, or the W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership, please contact the Farber Center at (605) 677-5702 or e-mail at

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