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A native Angelino and Spanish speaker, Ricardo served in the United States Marine Corps for 22 years. As a Marine, he served multiple tours in Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan and other locations around the world. He participated in all phases of military operations. He has extensive experience in counterinsurgency operations.

Upon his retirement from the Marines, Ricardo completed his undergraduate studies at Whittier College where he double majored in Political Science and Anthropology. His studies focused on the Chinese Community Party political culture and grand strategy.

He has served as an advisor to staffers in the United States Congress.