Air Force

July 26, 2013

Nellis Airman among AF’s 12 best for 2012

Tags:
Airman 1st Class Joshua Kleinholz
99th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Staff Sgt. Joseph Senteno, 99th Civil Engineer Squadron budget analyst, manages finances and budgeting for various projects and programs at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. Methods he implemented as a financial analyst significantly reduced man hours and saved unused funds.

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — For many Americans, the year 2008 brought the beginning of a new era in the country. Foreclosure signs lined the streets of many neighborhoods. Layoffs became the norm for even the most experienced American workers creating a tough job market for new college graduates with no experience who now faced fierce competition for the few jobs that were out there.

One of the Air Force’s 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year for 2012, Staff Sgt. Joseph Senteno, 99th Civil Engineer Squadron budget analyst, overcame the challenges of a difficult job market after graduating college … with a degree in finance.

“I applied for entry-level financial analyst positions and thought I did well in the interviews,” Senteno said. “It came down to the fact that I had no experience.”

With college loan payments breathing down his neck and time running out, Senteno took a job as waiter in his hometown of Carlsbad, Calif. The restaurant was located near military bases and was frequented by Navy and Air Force veterans that understood his predicament.

“I would always talk to these people and they’d say, ‘you should do this and you should do that,’” Senteno said. “The more and more I talked with them and heard their recommendations, the more I thought to myself, ‘yeah, maybe I would do well in the Air Force.’”

Like every Airman that came before him Senteno made the trip to his recruiter’s office where he applied for a commission. Senteno wasn’t selected to become an Air Force officer, but that didn’t discourage him. He informed his recruiter of his degree in finance and signed a contract that guaranteed him Air Force Specialty Code 6F0X1 Financial Management; it just seemed right.

“I needed experience, and that’s what the Air Force offered me,” Senteno said, and so just like that the finance major had a career.

“[Basic Military Training] did a great job; I had a great experience,” Senteno said. “My instructor was awesome, he motivated me [and] taught me to care for other people and helped build my ambition,” he added.

Staff Sgt. Joseph Senteno, 99th Civil Engineer Squadron budget analyst, advises an Airman on how to best use a financial document July 12 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. Senteno attributes much of his success to quality supervisors and strives to be the best mentor he can be.

Senteno’s motivation was evidenced early on in his career as he earned Top Physical Training performer and Honor Graduate in BMT and then an Academic Excellence award and Airman of the Month honors in technical training.

His first taste of his new career would come at Barksdale AFB, La., where he served as a customer service technician specializing in the Reserve Travel System. After only a few months on station, Senteno had processed more than $1 million in travel vouchers.

Senteno attributes much of his early success to quality supervisors who understood his goals and did everything they could to help him get where he wanted to be.

“Right off the bat I was set up for success,” Senteno said. “When I got [to Barksdale AFB], I made it very clear to my supervisors what my goals [were], and I became excellent at my job.”

Because of his outstanding performance and educational background, Senteno was chosen to fill an NCO position in financial analysis as an airman first class. In this position Senteno managed a $10 million plus program while training other Airmen and maintaining involvement in the local community. He had already won several awards for his work before being selected for Senior Airman Below the Zone in 2011.

Knowledge of analytical methods he gained during his time at San Diego State University helped him to implement new tools that made himself and other finance Airmen more effective. His three year analysis tool allowed side-by-side comparison of annual contracts and his Miscellaneous Obligation Reimbursement Document saved significant man hours and unused funds.

For the last three months Senteno has been assigned to the 99th CES, where he manages budgets and appropriates funds for various projects around base.

“He has made a rapid adaptation to his new duties and is eager and unhesitant when taking on new challenges,” said Alphonso Harris, Senteno’s current supervisor. “He’s has made a very positive impression.”

Senteno’s belief in the “whole person concept” has made him the well-rounded Airman he is today.

“What I’ve always been told is to never settle or become complacent where you are, always have a plan A, B, C and D,” Senteno said. “I have goals, and I’ll do what it takes to get there.”

Being named one of the Air Force’s 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year is a significant accomplishment for the new staff sergeant, who recently became a distinguished graduate from Airman Leadership School. But he isn’t done. Senteno is currently working towards his master’s degree in Business Administration and maintains a 4.0 GPA.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Charles Larkin Sr.

First sergeant provides health, welfare for warriors

U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Charles Larkin Sr. Master Sgt. Phelipe Salinas speaks to his athletes during the 2014 Warrior Games at the Garry Berry Stadium in Colorado Springs, Colo., Oct. 2. Salinas is the first sergean...
 
 

Safeguarding, re-evaluating your digital footprint

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Social media is a great resource for Airmen and their families to share information and stay connected to relatives at home and abroad. Although many depend on these wonderful tools, recent events have encouraged us to re-evaluate our digital footprint to ensure our personal and professional information is protected from online...
 
 

October is Energy Action Month: ‘I am Air Force Energy’

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — Summer has come to a close, and we’re all looking forward to more tolerable temperatures in the coming weeks. Even better news — this means your power bill is likely to go down. But if you think you pay a lot for energy, imagine paying Nellis’ bill of approximately $1 million...
 

 

Taming ‘tyranny of urgent’

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. — Many Airmen lead incredibly busy lives, full of unfinished tasks that we often wish we had more hours in the day to fit it all in, and in our professional lives, budgets remain tight, the Air Force is shrinking, and we are challenged to do more with less. Yet...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis

Armory: A home for weapons

U.S. Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis Senior Airman Jaime Romo, 99th Security Forces Squadron armorer, puts a M-240 rifle away after clearing the weapon at the 99th SFS armory at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo

Nellis Open House brings history to life

U.S. Air Force photo The AT-6 Texan, which was originally flown in 1935 and flown here in the 1940s, will be one of many aircraft at the Nellis Air Force Base Open House on Nov. 8 and 9. It is a single-engine advanced trainer a...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin