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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 6, 2009

Abraham Hunter Wins the 2009 Illinois Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest
Vienna, Illinois native wins for second consecutive year

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Abraham Hunter, a home-schooled student from Vienna, won “Best of Show” honors during the Illinois segment of the Federal Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) announced today.

“Abraham Hunter has absolutely exceeded all expectations of this contest,” said IDNR Director Marc Miller.  “His passion for art, and for the great outdoors, comes through in his work. We are proud of Abraham and of all of the young participants in this contest and encourage them to continue their passion for wildlife and the outdoors throughout their lives.”

The acrylic painting entitled “Golden Daybreak” depicts a pair of common goldeneye ducks with the male spreading his wings and shaking off water.  The winning artwork has been entered in the national competition to be held April 22, 2009 at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C.  It is the second consecutive year that an entry from Abraham Hunter has been selected for the “Best of Show” honor in Illinois.

Illinois’ “Best of Show” and all first, second, and third-place winning entries can be viewed at http://dnr.state.il.us/education/classrm/ribbon/main.htm.

The Federal Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest’s goal is to teach environmental science through the arts.  The Junior Duck Stamp program is patterned on the adult Federal Duck Stamp Contest.  The winning national entry will grace the 2009-2010 Federal Junior Duck Stamp and will be featured on limited edition prints and other licensed products.  The national first-place artist will receive $5,000.

Abraham Hunter’s “Best of Show” design was chosen from a group of 12 first-place winners in four categories: Group IV – grades 10-12; Group III – grades 7-9; Group II – grades 4-6; and Group I – grades K-3.  Three first, second and third-place winners were selected in each age group, along with 16 honorable mention designations. 

There were 475 entries.  Entrants are from public, private, and home schools, as well as private art studios.

Hunter’s work was judged a first-place winner in Group IV.  The two other winners in this division were Victoria Grubb (home-schooled, Pleasant Plains) and Taylor Snowman (Snowman Art Studio, Canton).

Group III winners include Eddie Garland (Bureau Valley High School, Manlius), Logan Barnas (Bureau Valley High School, Manlius) and Alexandra Grubb (home-schooled, Pleasant Plains).

Oskar Adams (New Hebron Christian School, Robinson), Julia Walchessen (Hinsdale Center for the Arts, Hinsdale) and Haley Planson (Hinsdale Center for the Arts, Hinsdale) were the first-place winners for Group II.

Nicole Lulkin (Art School of Glenview, Glenview), Matthew Jacquot (Epiphany Catholic School, Normal) and Joel Song (Art School of Glenview, Glenview) were awarded first place in Group I.

For his effort, Abraham Hunter will receive a variety of gifts and recognitions from the IDNR and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, plus two hand-carved and painted miniature duck decoys donated by the Sangamon Valley Woodcarvers.  All students who place first, second, third or honorable mention receive a ribbon.  All participants receive a certificate.

The annual contest is part of the Federal Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest, administered in Illinois by the Department of the Interior’s U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the IDNR. For more information, contact the IDNR Division of Education at dnr.teachkids@illinois.gov or 217-524-4126.


Editor’s note: A list of 1st- 3rd place winners is below: 


Place Student School Teacher
Group I
Grades K-3   
1 Nicole Lulkin Art School of Glenview, Glenview Hyun Shin
1 Matthew Jacquot Epiphany Catholic School, Normal John Smyth
1 Joel Song Art School of Glenview, Glenview Hyun Shin
2 Eun Soo Kim KoreArt Institute, Palatine Sung Lee
2 Autumn Tennison New Hebron Christian School, Robinson Laurel Adams
2 Derrick Oliver Francis Parker Community Academy, Chicago Marjorie Boyles
3 Molly Rickert Epiphany Catholic School, Normal John Smyth
3 Nicholas Williams Walker Art Studio, Havana Tami Walker
3 Emma Goodman New Hebron Christian School, Robinson Laurel Adams

Group II
Grades 4-6   
1 Oskar Adams New Hebron Christian School, Robinson Laurel Adams
1 Julia Walchessen Hinsdale Center for the Arts, Hinsdale Rebecca Banasiak
1 Haley Planson Hinsdale Center for the Arts, Hinsdale Rebecca Banasiak
2 Hannah Swanson Art School of Glenview, Glenview Dong Ju Kang
2 Kamlia Grochowski Art School of Glenview, Glenview Hyun Shin
2 Isabella Gutierrez Hinsdale Center for the Arts, Hinsdale Rebecca Banasiak
3 Martin Asama Home School, Jacksonville Beth Asama
3 Ashley In Art School of Glenview, Glenview Hyun Shin
3 Carly Green Hinsdale Center for the Arts, Hinsdale Rebecca Banasiak

Group III
Grades 7-9   
1 Eddie Garland Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth
1 Logan Barnas Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth
1 Alexandra Grubb Home School, Pleasant Plains Melissa Grubb
2 Vanessa Coleman Walker Art Studio, Havana Tami Walker
2 Aubrey Molln La Moille High School, La Moille Gretchen Fitzpatrick
2 Stella Tu Home School, Northbrook Susan Chang
3 Abby Blackert Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth
3 Olivia McDonald Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth
3 Johannah Bauch Masterpiece Art Instruction, Aurora Karine Bauch

Group IV 
Grades 10-12   
1 Abraham Hunter Home School, Vienna Karla Hunter
1 Victoria Grubb Home School, Pleasant Plains Melissa Grubb
1 Taylor Snowman Snowman Art Studios, Canton Tracy Snowman
2 Laura Brummel Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth
2 Narissa Orwig Canton High School, Canton Marnie Eskridge
2 Roberto Almanza, Jr.  Home School, Franklin Park Roberto Almanza
3 Taryn Underwood Lincolnwood High School, Raymond Judith Best
3 Lexie Walters Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth
3 Brandon Clark Bureau Valley High School, Manlius Sheila Heth



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