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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Greg Walden (R-Hood River) announced Tuesday his nomination of 13 Oregon students — including Klamath County’s Connor Cherpeski — for acceptance to one of the prestigious United States service academies, according to a news release. Walden’s Service Academy Nomination Board — retired and active-duty military officers who interviewed potential candidates for the service academies — recommended each student based on their academic performance, extracurricular involvement, and character.

Cherpeski, the son of Nathan and Larissa Cherpeski of Klamath Falls, attends Klamath Union High School and was nominated to the United States Military Academy.

“It is an honor to nominate these outstanding young Oregonians to our nation’s service academies,” Walden said. “These future leaders have earned these well deserved nominations through years of hard work, dedication, and commitment to character. By pursuing higher education at one of our country’s select service academies, these students have shown a desire to lead by example, grow intellectually, and serve the United States in uniform. I am confident that each nominee will be successful in this admirable endeavor and that their futures will be bright.

“I’d also like to thank my Service Academy Nomination Board for recommending these young leaders. Their experience serving our country in uniform is invaluable to the nomination process, and speaks to the unique qualities of the students they interviewed and recommended for nominations. Without their guidance and understanding of what it takes to succeed at the U.S. service academies, these nominations would not be possible,” said Walden.

Serving on Walden’s Service Academy Nomination Board are: Retired U.S. Army Brigadier General Frank Toney, Retired U.S. Marine Corps Colonel Dave Dotterrer, Retired U.S. Navy Captain Harriet Harris, Retired U.S. Air Force Colonel Jeff Smith, and Oregon Army National Guard Lieutenant Colonel Travis Lee.

The service academies include: the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado; the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York; the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland; and the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York. Final selection for admission to the service academies will be determined by officials at each academy this spring.

Students who are interested in learning more about service academy nominations can visit Walden’s website at https://walden.house.gov/academynominations.

The 12 remaining nominees include: Samuel Conklin, Brendon Dearing, Wyatt Eckholt, Ethan Reed, Parker Ruggles, Skyler Sundvall of Bend; Teaghan Doran of La Pine; Brooke Parker of Redmond; Maverick Geller of Hood River; Andrea Gilliland of Central Point; Adrian Stanfield of Talent, and Keith Oswald of Cove.