Sammis & Ochoa is a full-service public relations firm, specializing in the following practices and industries:



Media Relations
Event Management
Social Media
Community Programming
Internal Communications
Strategic Planning


Sport and Entertainment

Tanya Sammis | Co-owner

Expertise: Event Management, Non-profit Organizations, Sports Management, Client Relations, Corporate Culture
Education: Double graduate of The University of Texas with a B.S. in Public Relations in 2004 and a M.Ed. in Sport Management in 2007
Industry Experience: 8 years

Tanya is the heart and soul of Sammis & Ochoa. For more than seven years, she has dedicated her career to the promotion of her clients and their endeavors. Tanya’s experience includes management positions in public relations and the non-profit industry, in addition to community- and media-related work in the sports industry.

She has managed public relations and event coordination accounts for non-profits including Eva’s Heroes, the Raul Jimenez Thanksgiving Dinner and the AT&T Championship. Her corporate accounts consist of the International Academy of Design and Technology-San Antonio, Fitness Porvida, The Prestigious Mark, Champion AC and The Plastic and Cosmetic Center of South Texas.

Tanya’s expertise lies in media relationships and coverage, as well as producing and managing full-scale events. She has served as the event coordinator for fundraising events including the Second Annual Tony and Eva Parker Celebrity Casino Night, Gridiron Heroes Friday Night Lights Season Premieres and the Texas Great American Tribute, among others.

She sits on the board for the San Antonio affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure and is the Race for the Cure public relations committee chair.

Her mission is simple: To make at least one person’s day better every day so that they may positively impact the lives of others, and ultimately, change the world.

Mario Ochoa | Co-Owner

Mario Ochoa - Sammis Ochoa PR FirmMario Ochoa - Sammis Ochoa PR Firm

Expertise: Media Relations, Strategic Planning, Copywriting
Education: Communication Arts – University of the Incarnate Word
Industry Experience: 11 years

Mario is the resident optimist for San Antonio’s Sammis & Ochoa. He specializes in media relations, copywriting, community outreach planning, and looking at the glass half-full.

As a native San Antonian, Mario is committed to the city and brings with him a profound affection for the development of his hometown. From the bustling and burgeoning center city to the vivid cultural scenes of the Westside, if it’s San Antonio, Mario will rally behind it.

Starting as a student journalist for the University of the Incarnate Word Logos, Mario has accumulated over 12 years of experience in the media and public relations industry.

In his tenure as a public relations practitioner, he has handled accounts for regional small businesses – Express Information Systems, JC Food Mart, and others – large corporate entities – Career Education Corporation, Screamworks Entertainment, Gladiator Events, and others.

Mario also is an active local speaker and regularly presents at high school and university-level institutions on public relations best practices.  He is also a rotating member of the Gang of Four radio program hosted by Jack Riccardi on KTSA 550 AM San Antonio.

However, nothing jazzes him more than learning. An avid reader of anything he can get his hands on, Mario has been known to devote hours online and offline to learning about the world – its cultures, its communities and its eccentricities. If you can’t find him at his desk, look for him reading a book on his tablet or surfing Wikipedia.

His mission is simple: To energize people!

Allie Benson | Account Coordinator

Allie Benson - Sammis Ochoa PR Firm
Expertise: Media Relations, Copywriting
Education: B.A. Public Relations – Texas State University – San Marcos – 2011
Industry Experience: 3 years

Allie launched her career as an intern with Sammis & Ochoa in January 2011. During her tenure she expanded her knowledge of the industry. She then graduated from Texas State University in San Marcos with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in French.

She also has a passion for volunteering in her community and stands by the quote, “Service is the rent we pay for the space we occupy on this earth.” Allie serves on the staff of Texas Bluebonnet Girls State, an American Legion Auxiliary sponsored program geared toward teaching high school-aged girls the principles and practices of state and local government. She has been a member of the American Legion Auxiliary since the summer of 2011.

Allie sits on the Marketing Committee of LOOP, a group dedicated to transforming San Antonio into a premiere city of choice for talented, motivated and innovative young professionals. When she’s not working, Allie enjoys going to the movies and cheering for the San Antonio Spurs.

Her mission is simple: To empower others by helping them find their own personal strengths.

Aquila Mendez-Valdez | Account Coordinator

Aquila Mendez-Valdez - Sammis Ochoa PR Firm
Expertise: Social Media, Copywriting, Research and Development
Education: B.A. Public Relations – Western Kentucky University 2010
Industry Experience: 5 years

Aquila joined our team in spring 2011 and is our resident traveler with homes in both San Antonio and Veracruz, Mexico.

Her career began at Western Kentucky University, where she earned her Bachelor’s in Public Relations in 2010. She is currently pursuing her Master’s in Communications and Leadership with Gonzaga University. She blogs at Haute in Texas, a lifestyle blog aimed at connecting with career women, young mothers, and passionate people. Her specialties include social media, brand development, and media relations.

When she has a spare moment, she enjoys reading, traveling, writing and playing volleyball. Her charities of choice include the Open Arms Shop, Martinez Street Women’s Center, and Transplants for Children. She is married to her college sweetheart, Orlando, and their daughter Cora is two years old. They also have a Bichon Frise named Frenchie.

Her mission is simple: To challenge herself and everyone around her to be better every single day.