The Journey to America from Colombia with Francisco Sanchez – 8-22-15
July 11, 2015
When you have spent your entire life immersed in the culture of the country you live in, the customs and expectations come naturally to you, and you fall into the patterns of the society without much thought. But when you are a visitor, or come to a country after living part of your life somewhere else, the traditions can all be new, and not necessarily easy to navigate. The journey of coming to American from another country is an adventure that requires integrating many new customs. We’ll hear firsthand about the challenges of that journey from our guest who came to America from Colombia, and stayed to raise his family in the Midwest.
Francisco Sanchez was born in Cali, Colombia. He first came to the United States as an Exchange Student in 1971 through the American Field Service program, and was hosted for a year by an American Family in Brookfield, Illinois. He returned to the U.S. as a foreign student in 1973 to pursue undergraduate studies, and in 1977 graduated from Bowling Green University in Ohio with a Bachelors in Business Administration. In 1978, he completed an MBA at The University of Toledo, in Ohio and started his banking career with the Northern Trust Company, Chicago, Illinois.
Later in his career, he was hired by The First National Bank of Chicago and was sent overseas to offices in Venezuela, Panama, and Australia where he was Head of Marketing for First Chicago Australia Ltd. Upon returning to the U.S. after nine years of overseas banking assignments, Francisco was hired by S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc., Racine, WI as Treasury Manager, Latin America and Asia Pacific in 1991. He went on to become Assistant Treasurer and, in 1999 became Vice President and Corporate Treasurer of Diversey Inc. (f/k/a Johnson Diversey Inc. In 2006, Francisco returned to banking with JP Morgan Chase in Milwaukee, WI where he worked as Vice President, Middle Market Banking until his retirement in 2013.
Francisco became a naturalized U.S. Citizen in 1996. He is married and lives with his wife Alix in Racine, WI. They have three grown children Natalia, Tyler, and David of whom they are very proud. Francisco’s hobbies are reading, soccer, and salsa dancing. He is also an avid volunteer and has been on the board of United Way of Racine County, the Racine County Economic Development Corporation, and the Gateway Technical College Foundation amongst other organizations.