J.W. Cortés is an award-winning actor, Marine combat veteran, singer, filmmaker and philanthropist. Born and raised in Sunset Park Brooklyn, to inspiring Puerto Rican parents, Cortés developed an interest in the arts along with a desire to serve his community and country. Recognized for his drive, talent and positive attitude, Cortés has become one of the most respected prime-time Puerto Rican actors on television today.
Currently Cortés plays the recurring role of “Detective Carlos Alvarez” on FOX’s hit prime-time series “GOTHAM.” He is the first actor in history to portray the iconic comic book character in television and film. Detective Alvarez was originally created by Judd Winick’s for his hit DC Comics’ The New 52 Catwomanseries. In addition to “GOTHAM,” Cortés has had various roles on: NBC’s “The Blacklist,” “The Mysteries of Laura,” CBS’s “Blue Bloods,” and STARZ’s “Power.”
Previously, Cortés starred as an “Operative” on NBC’s reality television show, “STARS EARN STRIPES.” On the show he, along with Chris Kyle and other operatives helped celebrities, raising awareness and funds for various military and veteran charities, participate in simulated military training missions. He has also appeared in feature films including the soon-to-be released “Sugarfields,” “As Good As Dead” from Andie MacDowell, “Blue Caprice” with Isaiah Washington and the award winning film “Stop” at Sundance Film Festival.
In addition to acting, producing and community service, Cortés serves New York State’s Metropolitan Transit Authority Police Department (MTAPD) as an Officer based in Grand Central Terminal. He also helps raise awareness and funding for various charities and organizations including Autism Speaks, Got Your 6, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, the Bob Woodruff Foundation, the Gary Sinise Foundation and the USO. Cortés performed at the Music Heals benefit concert in Washington D.C. to raise awareness for the charity MusiCorps, was chosen by Got Your 6 to serve as one of the organizations celebrity “American Icons” and “Story Tellers;” and received Comité Noviembre’s 2015 spokesperson and entertainer of the year award.
Cortés served in the United States Marine Corps for nearly thirteen years attaining the rank of Gunnery Sergeant, deploying for Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. His military awards include the Combat Action Ribbon, Navy & Marine Corps Achievement Medals and Marine of the Year. He studied acting at the world renowned William Esper Studio, under the tutelage of Terry Knickerbocker. J.W. Cortés is the proud father of two boys, a lucky husband and loving owner of an American-Bulldog named “Blue.”