Congressman Matt Cartwright has announced students from Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties nominated for appointments to attend the United States Service Academies, including two from Dunmore, Colby DeSando and Charles Valvano.
Each student nominated by Congressman Cartwright will go through the academies’ competitive application process. If offered an appointment, the students will join their respective academy’s Class of 2024.
“Each student nominated is among the best and brightest of Northeastern Pennsylvania, and they represent the next generation of great American leaders,” Cartwright said. “I want to thank these outstanding young adults for their willingness to commit to serving their country. They give me hope that our best days are surely ahead.”
Colby DeSando, son of Michael and Lori DeSando is a graduate of Dunmore High School. He has been nominated to the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD.
Colby currently attends Virginia Tech and is a member of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets and the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Marching Band. While at Dunmore High School, Colby was vice president of Students Against Destructive Decisions and a member of Health Career Club and the marching, concert, and jazz bands.
Colby is an active member of his community, serving as the Public Safety Head Chairman City and State at the Keystone Boys State in 2018 and a Keystone Boys State counselor in 2019. As a member of the Sea Cadets, he was both a Seaman and Assistant Leading Petty Officer.
Charles Valvano is the son of Guy and Kellie Valvano and a senior at Dunmore Jr./Sr. High School. Charles is a member of the National Honors Society, Dunmore High School Yearbook, TACT, and the Health Service, Engineering, and Students Against Destructive Decisions clubs.
He won first place in the 2019 Northeast Pennsylvania Bridge Building Competition and went on to place first in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and 26th internationally. Charles is on the varsity football and track and field teams. He was also 2018 Scranton Times Division III Coaches’ All-Star Defensive Selection and is a co-captain of the football team.
Charles is a member of the U.S Naval Sea Cadets and was the recipient of the Dart Drones Scholarship. Charles has been nominated to the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, MD and the United States Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, CO.
Other local nominations include Lance Corporal Michael Huntington, Dallas, currently serving as a musician in the United Marine Corps Band, also nominated for the Naval Academy; Tyler Kotowski, Scott Township, nominated to the U.S. Air Force Academy; Stephen Postupak, also of Dallas, a member of the Air Force ROTC at St. Joseph’s University, also nominated to the Air Force Academy; Jakob Quanbeck, Clarks Summit, who has been nominated to the U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Navy Academy and the U.S. Military Academy; Dylan Rowland of Carbondale, who is currently majoring in mechanical engineering at Penn State University and is a part of the Army ROTC Nittany Lion Battalion nominated to the U.S. Military Academy.