Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-CA) announced the eleven Ventura County students she nominated to the U.S. Service Academies and who have accepted appointments to attend these prestigious national institutions in the fall. This year, there were an impressive 17 appointments for students in Ventura County, with some students receiving more than one appointment to multiple service academies.

“Every year, the service academy nomination and appointment process shows us that the future of our country is in good hands,” said Congresswoman Julia Brownley. “I am so proud of these young men and women who are answering the call to serve our nation in uniform. These students are the best and brightest of Ventura County, and I know they will represent us well.”

The students are as follows:

U.S. Air Force Academy

  • Diego Jacinto
  • Ashley Lee
  • Ryan Collier

U.S. Naval Academy

  • Kyler Vea

U.S. Military Academy

  • Justin Hardy
  • Joseph DeMartino

U.S. Merchant Marine Academy

  • Gregory Dillon 
  • Nathaniel Federoff  
  • Wren Gillingham 
  • Derek Vanasse 
  • Ryan Vannini

Photos are available here.


The rigorous nomination and appointment process began last fall with students throughout Ventura County submitting lengthy applications to Congresswoman Brownley’s office. The students were then interviewed by a panel of local alumni of the U.S service academies convened by the Congresswoman. The panel then provided the Congresswoman recommendations for each student, and the Congresswoman nominated candidates to the service academies based on the panel’s recommendations. Each nominee then went through the academy application process and then a select group were offered appointments by the academies.

The honor of attending a service academy comes with an obligation and commitment to serve in the U.S. military for a minimum of five years upon graduation.

For more information about the U.S. Service Academies application and Congressional nomination process, click here.