It's an understatement to say that Sonia Castillo is committed to service. She is of service to clients every day as a representative in the Financial Crimes Risk Management department in Westlake, TX, but her history of service goes back much deeper than her one year of helping clients at Schwab.
There is a generations-deep legacy of military service in Sonia's family that has shaped her.
"The military affects every aspect of my life," explains Sonia. "I grew up with military values and morals. I was taught to have strong convictions and beliefs around doing the right things and being loyal."
Sonia's grandfather served in the Army, her father spent 34 years as a Navy Seal, including five-years in Vietnam, and her uncle was a Thunderbird in the Air Force.
"It was just kind of a family tradition. I was brought up knowing that when you turn 18 you join the military," said Sonia.
Sonia served almost nine-years in the Army, including two deployments to Iraq. She did various tasks during her military service, but her main job was to test aircraft fuel. In 2008, while serving as a Sergeant in Iraq, Sonia was injured, resulting in a medical retirement.
From there, Sonia sought new opportunities to serve.
"After the Army, I went into policing because it was the next best thing to me." After six-years serving as a police officer, Sonia sustained another injury and settled into the fact that she needed to search for a less physical career.
"My sister and brother-in-law actually both work for Schwab in Southlake (Texas), so they got me interested in the idea of finance itself," explains Sonia and her journey to Schwab.
I enjoy that I get to talk to people and help them with problems. That’s the way my parents raised me.
We were centered around a culture of doing whatever for anybody, and I’ve been able to bring that to the military, the police force and now to Schwab.
- Sonia Castillo, Financial Crimes Risk Management, Schwab
In her free time, Sonia and her husband, a police officer, enjoy traveling together and enjoying local cuisine. They recently returned from a trip to New Hampshire, where in addition to binging on lobster rolls, Sonia was able to walk the stage at Southern New Hampshire University and accept her master’s degree in Criminal Justice and Public Administration, thanks to the Military Tuition Assistance program.
“It was really special to me because when I got my bachelor’s degree I was in Iraq and never got to walk,” shares Sonia.
Sonia has successfully transitioned to civilian life while maintaining a focus on service. And the legacy of service in her family did not stop with Sonia, whose daughter is currently serving in the Air Force.