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NEWS | Oct. 13, 2023

At Fort Buchanan, 'People First' is not a slogan; it is action

By Carlos Cuebas U.S. Army Garrison Fort Buchanan

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) conducted a hiring fair dedicated exclusively to veterans at the installation's community club on Oct. 12.

Melany Lasanta Pérez, a Puerto Rico National Guard member, attended the event looking for a civilian job opportunity.

"I hope I can go through every station on this fair and be hired by the IRS at the end of the day. I am ready to give 100 percent of my energy, as I do on my military job," said Lasanta Pérez, a Barranquitas native.

Lasanta Perez holds a bachelor's degree in network management and Telecommunications and has several years of military experience as an Information Technology Specialist in the Puerto Rico National Guard.

"I am looking for a permanent job that improves my quality of life," added Lasanta Pérez.

IRS Managers and Human Resources specialists were on-site reviewing and accepting resumes, conducting interviews, and making hiring determinations on the spot.

"Fort Buchanan has a partnership with the IRS, and we facilitate and coordinate their hiring events for veterans. The IRS considers the service in uniform an admirable quality. They are looking for the unique skills, leadership traits, and experience veterans offer," said Wilbin C. Colón Vargas, Transition Services Specialist at the Fort Buchanan Army Transition Assistance Program, who coordinated the event.

According to Colón, approximately 300 veterans participated in this hiring fair, the first conducted in fiscal year 2024. The IRS conducted two hiring fairs for veterans in Puerto Rico last year.

"This has been the largest event they have had so far. It is running well. We hope they can hire most of the qualifying veterans," said Colón.

Many vacancies were available, including Human Resources Specialists, Information Technology Specialists, Management, and Program Analysis.

According to a recent Government Executive newspaper article, "IRS is hiring applicants fresh out of school, at the mid-career level and those near retirement. The agency has hired thousands of new customer service staff, which has led to boosting its phone answering rate from 10% in 2022 to nearly 90% this year."

The Army Transition Assistance Program (TAP) provides Soldiers with the counseling, employment, and education workshops and seminars required to transition from the military into the civilian world successfully.

Veterans and Soldiers looking for a civilian job can contact the Fort Buchanan Transition Assistance Program officer at (787) 707-3546 or by email at

As the U.S. Army's center of gravity in the region, Fort Buchanan serves a diverse military community comprised of approximately 15,000 active duty, Reserve, and National Guard Soldiers and members of the Air Force, Marine Corps Reserve, and the Navy's Operational Support Center.