Samoa Joins Nevada National Guard to Strengthen Bilateral Relations


Apia, Samoa, – The U.S. Embassy is delighted to announce the signed collaboration between the Nevada National Guard and the Government of Samoa through the State Partnership Program, aiming to fortify the bonds between Samoa and the United States. The partnership, formalized with Samoa’s inclusion in the Nevada National Guard, represents a significant milestone in diplomacy and cooperation between the two nations.

The signing ceremony was held at the U.S. Embassy Residence, between the Nevada National Guard Major General OndraBerry, and the Government of Samoa, the Minister of Police, Prisons and Corrections Services, Honorable Faualo Harry Schuster.

“I am excited and committed in signing the newest State Partnership with the State of Samoa. We stand ready to learn and develop a long lasting partnership with Samoa and are focused on a whole of Government approach Whether the request is humanitarian assistance, disaster response, cyber security or noncommissioned officer development or governmental relations , the Nevada National Guard is prepared and ready to collaborate with Samoa in whatever areas of agreement makes sense. On behalf of the 4700 Nevada National Guard, who are Always Ready and Always there, we look forward to our to working with our newest State Partner, the State of Samoa,” said Major General OndraBerry.

About the signing, U.S. Ambassador to Samoa Tom Udall stated, “Today’s signing between Samoa and the state of Nevada is a big step forward in our bilateral partnership. The State Partnership program will enable new possibilities in disaster response, humanitarian assistance, cultural exchange, and so much more.”

The State Partnership Program serves as a platform for mutual support, sharing expertise, and fostering cultural understanding. It leverages the unique defense capabilities, skills, and resources of the Nevada National Guard to contribute to the long-term development and growth of Samoa’s defense forces, emergency management, and national security sectors.

For decades, the United States and Samoa have enjoyed a robust and friendly relationship, characterized by shared values, history, and common interests. This new partnership through the State Partnership Program further strengthens this bond by bringing together the resilience, courage, and professionalism of the Nevada National Guard in assisting Samoa’s development goals.

The alignment between Nevada’s National Guard leadership and Samoa’s national security needs holds great potential for enhancing both nations’ capacity to respond to global challenges. Key areas of collaboration will include disaster response management, humanitarian assistance, cyber defense, as well as the exchange of best practices in training exercises and joint operations.

“We are excited to bring Samoa into the Nevada National Guard,” said Ben Kieckhefer, Chief of Staff to Governor Joe Lombardo. “This whole government approach will allow us to grow this new relationship looking across our respective governments and find the best ways to make impactful, long-lasting connections.”

The State Partnership Program creates a platform for both Samoa and Nevada to engage in cultural exchanges, economic collaboration, and educational opportunities. As ties deepen, this program aims to build shared understanding, promote cultural appreciation, and develop lasting friendships between the people of Samoa and the United States.

Together, Samoa and the Nevada National Guard are committed to safeguarding common values while working towards the betterment of both nations. This partnership signifies a new era of collaboration and cooperation, one that looks towards a brighter future for both Samoa and the United States.

About the State Partnership Program:

The State Partnership Program, initiated in 1993, is a Department of Defense program involving partnerships between U.S. states and foreign countries. The program aims to facilitate mutual support, cooperation, and development across various sectors, including defense, emergency management, and humanitarian assistance. Through this program, both states and nations benefit from cultural exchanges, economic collaboration, and educational opportunities.