ATHENS – The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center is pleased to announce the Texas division of Wildlife Forever’s State-Fish Art Contest winners for 2020.
The State-Fish Art Contest is part of an international conservation education program designed to foster youth interest in fish, fisheries, and fishing. The program encourages K-12 students to submit original artwork of any officially designated state fish and an essay or poem about the participant’s fish entry, its habitat or efforts to conserve it.
“The State-Fish Art Contest does a tremendous job of exposing students across Texas to the wonders of fish and fisheries resources through the nexus of art,” said Tom Lang, Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center Director. “We always look forward to this time of year when we are once again amazed by the outstanding work and artistic interpretations of these young Texans.”
This year, judges at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center chose the top 12 out of 286 total entries from Texas students. These top 12 works of art will be featured at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center, in the 2021 Texas State-Fish Art Calendar, and at the Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest at Lake Fork November 5-8.
In the K-3 category, winners were: First Place, John Lee of Carrollton; Second Place, Yuna Kim of Allen; Third Place, Anya Hegde of Irving.
In the grades 4–6 category, winners were: First Place, Phillip Kim of Irving; Second Place, Collin Chon of Frisco; Third Place, Taylor Davis of Coppell.
In the grades 7–9 category, winners were: First Place, Amber Li of Coppell; Second Place, Olivia Park of Dallas; Third Place, Arim Jun of Dallas.
In the grades 10–12 category, winners were: First Place, Eunice Kim of Colleyville; Second Place, Madeline Alexander of Keller; Third Place, Juliann Dooley of Warren.
First-place winners in each of the four age groups advanced to the national level and competed against winners from other states. Three Texas winners were announced as national winners by Wildlife Forever. Amber Li’s steelhead trout won first place in the nation for the 7th through 9th grade category. Eunice Kim’s cutthroat trout won second place in the 10th through 12th grade division and Philip Kim’s northern pike was selected as the third-place winner in the 4th through 6th grade group. Amber Li’s essay, “Steelhead Trout, A Short Biography” also won second place nationwide in the grade 7-9 category.
Scholarships for the first, second, and third place Texas winners are provided by the Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest. Scholarships in the grades 10–12 division are $1,000 for first place, $750 for second place and $500 for third place. Awards in the 4–6 and 7–9 grade levels are $200 for first, $150 for second, $100 for third. In the K—3 division awards are $100 for first, $75 for second, $50 for third.
Scholarships for Texas winners are provided by funds raised through Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest, with additional support for the contest provided by the William E. Armentrout Foundation and Friends of the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center.
“Sponsor support for the Texas contest has been a key factor in making it the biggest in the nation,” said Zoe Ann Stinchcomb, Texas coordinator. “The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center hosts a day of fishing, fun and recognition for the top forty winning students, their teachers and families. And each child participating in the Texas contest receives a certificate. None of this could happen without the support of our sponsors.”
Stinchcomb also pointed out that research done on the Texas contest shows that participation in the contest makes students more likely to become interested in fishing. “Getting youth involved in the outdoors is a key goal of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and we applaud our sponsors for helping grow the future generation of stewards of our outdoors.”
Honorable mentions for Texas students in grades K–3 were awarded to Desmond Low of Irving; Junhee Kim of Flower Mound; Eddie Li of Bellaire; Seha (Stella) Jeong of Lewisville; Emma Nguyen of Southlake; Crystal Shen of Coppell; and Addyson Villarreal of Crosby.
Honorable mentions in grades 4–6 were awarded to: Nysa Nayak of Irving; Gracie Whisneant of Silsbee; Jonah Kim of Flower Mound; Sanjitha Yeruva of Irving; Victoria Jung of McKinney; Stephanie Lee of Frisco; and Caitlyn Nguyen of Southlake.
Honorable mentions for grades 7–9 were: Lydia Harris of Corpus Christi; Margo Johnson of Corsicana; Alice Won of Flower Mound; Saanvi Mhatre of Houston; Jamie Yoon of Flower Mound; Meera Thamaran of Coppell; and Cindy Wang of Irving.
Honorable mentions for grades 10–12 were: Marvin Deckert of Fred; Stacy Hong of Irving; Yiwei Shen of Coppell; Victoria Gore of Fred; Alexis Hollyfield of Warren; Zoë Montgomery of Warren; and Michelle Huang of Coppell.
Educators who wish to have their students enter the 2021 contest can find entry forms, rules and guidelines and more online. A lesson plan can also be found that offers interdisciplinary curriculum including lessons and activities, a species identification section profiling each state fish, a glossary and student worksheets. Learn more at www.wildlifeforever.org.
The State-Fish Art Contest is a project of Wildlife Forever. Located in White Bear Lake, Minnesota, Wildlife Forever is a nonprofit multispecies conservation organization dedicated to conserving America’s wildlife heritage. Working at the grassroots level, Wildlife Forever has funded conservation projects in all 50 states, committing millions of dollars to “on-the-ground” efforts. Wildlife Forever supports habitat restoration and enhancement, land acquisition, research and management of fish and wildlife populations.
To view or download high resolution images of the winning artwork, visit the 2020 Fish Art Contest Album on the TPWD Flickr page.