Archive for Public Service

Memorial Day Service


Today I was honored to lead the Yucaipa High School JR ROTC Memorial Day Service in the City of Banning. It will also be the last time I wear my Air Force JR ROTC uniform and my next uniform will be that of the United States Navy when I attend to US Naval Academy Preparatory school at Naval Station, Newport, Rhode Island in July.

3rd Eagle Project this month – Alex Bottenberg

Troop 11 Eagle Project - Alex Bottenberg 1

This is our 3rd Eagle Project this month with Troop 11. This project was led by Alex Bottenberg. We painted the teen center at City of Yucaipa. I just realized this is my final Eagle Project I will participate in prior to leaving scouting.


Colin Norris Eagle Project at Yucaipa Equestrian Center

Putting in irrigation system for new trees we planted

Just finished up doing a Troop 11 Eagle Project, led by Colin Norris at Yucaipa Equestrian Center.

Speaking Engagement -Fire up for Scouting

Builing Fire for Speed

I will be speaking this Wednesday evening at Boy Scout event, Fired Up For Scouting. Looking forward to sharing my story. See Details below

Fired Up For Scouting

Keynote Speaker at California BSA’s Inland Empire Council Award Dinner

photo 2

I was honored to speak at the California Inland Empire Council’s Annual Volunteer Recognition Dinner last night the Moreno Vally Conference and Recreation Center.

I was asked by Paul Foster, Mayor-Pro Tem of the City of Redlands, and Executive Board Member of the CIEC council to speak at this event.

The title of my speech was, “What Being an Eagle Scout Means to Me.”

Grand Opening Ceremony of El Dorado Park in Yucaipa

Yucaipa ROTC Color Guard

On Friday, I led the  Yucaipa High School Color Guard at the Grand Opening to El Dorado Ranch Park in Yucaipa. It was amazing 300+ acre park in Yucaipa in the foothills before Oak Glen. It was a nice surprise when Matt Knox, Congressman Paul Cook, District Coordinator, congratulated me for my recent nomination to the academies at the event.

Congressman Cook, meet and greet in Yucaipa

Congressman Paul Cook at Yucaipa Meet and Greet.

Last night, my dad and I spent evening at Yucaipa Community Center where Congressman Col. Paul Cook (ret), hosted his first meet and greet since becoming the congressman for our district. It was standing room only. I got a chance to talk with Congressman Cook, and he wished me luck in my upcoming nomination interview with his office in a few weeks.

I was sitting with my ROTC Instructors, Col. Maldonado and Tech. Sgt.

Mayor Denise Hoyt at the event as well. Did you know that Mayor is one my assistant swimming coaches and the counselor to my Yucaipa Youth Advisory Committee.


Congressman Paul Cook at Yucaipa Meet and Greet.

Congressman Paul Cook at Yucaipa Meet and Greet.

Congressional Interview with Col. Paul Cook

Nomination Panel Interview with Paul Cooks Office

I was just notified that my congressional interview with Col. Paul Cook(ret) office is on January 4, 2014.

I am excited about this interview and looking forward to sharing with the panel my desire to serve my country. The one thing that has prepared me for this interview has been the last five years of interviews with the Boy Scouts. Every rank advancement we had to do a skills review, scoutmaster interview and board reviews. Thank God for scouting.

I am planning on doing a “mock” board review with the help of some of the scout parents to help me better prepare for my nomination panel interview. I am going to trying to get that done in next couple weeks.

I am asking for nomination to Naval Academy, West Point, Air Force Academy and the Merchant Marine Academy. My application to all the academies is complete except the Merchant Marine Academy. I have few more items to finish up this next week on the Merchant Marine Academy.

Here is the letter I received from Congressman Cooks office.


Nomination Panel Interview with Paul Cooks Office

Nomination Panel Interview with Paul Cooks Office


Another Troop 11 Boy Scout completes his Eagle Project


This weekend I had the pleasure of working with my friend, Ventura Wilson on his Eagle Project. His projected consisted of building a Labyrinth at my church, Unity of Yucaipa in Yucaipa, California.

This was an awesome project and once it was done it looked beautiful.

We had at least 50+ scouts, parents, and even my JRTOC cadets came down to help with this project. This was 16 hours of community service time that goes fast and is a lot of fun.

Congrats Ventura, looking forward to seeing you in the Eagles Nest!

Celebrating the completion of Ventura Eagle Project.

Celebrating the completion of Ventura Eagle Project.

Leaving for California Boys State

Samaniego ready to attend American Legion Boys State Program

Today at 8pm I leave for Sacramento to attend the 76th annual American Legions Boys State Program. I am pretty tired after my flight back from Annapolis, Maryland last night.

I am looking forward to seeing what Boys State is all about and meeting the “Best of Best” in the
State of California.

I already know a few people that went to The United States Naval Academy the same time I did will also be attending Boys State.


It’s official I am a Boy State Delegate

Boys State

Earlier I mailed off my “Blue Card” to American Legion that confirmed I was chosen as one of California’s Boys State Delegate for American Legions Boys State 76th Session in Sacramento in late June.

Boys State is one of the most respected and selective educational programs of government instruction for United States high-school students.

The program enables students to learn about the operation of local, county and state government. This sounds like a ton of fun.

I know I am going busy this summer. Two days after school is over, I am leaving for Annapolis, Maryland for The Navy Academy’s Summer Seminar for a week.

Once I get home, I leave 12 hours later for Boy’s State in Sacramento.

I am still waiting to hear if I was chosen to go back to Marine Corp. Devil Pup program as an “Eagle Mentor” that would be in mid-July.

Until then have to keep working out to get ready for my fitness test at the Naval Academy this summer.


P.S. What is Boy’s State? Check out this video.