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Alabama Students Win 2009 State-Fish Art Contest

June 08, 2009

Three Alabama students are winners in the 2009 Wildlife Forever State-Fish Art Contest. The winners were chosen from 112 entries submitted by students statewide. The Alabama winners are: 6th grader Madelyn Howard from Lott Middle School in Citronelle, 7th grader Taylor Perkins from Floyd Middle Magnet School in Montgomery, and 11th grader Anna Riley from the Alabama School of Fine Arts in Birmingham.
 
The nationwide contest encourages young artists to draw and learn about their state fish. The students also compete for art scholarships to attend the Art Institutes International Minnesota. The contest is open to all students in grades 4-12. Entries are separated into three grade categories: 4-6, 7-9, and 10-12. Winning contestants from every state are honored in each category.
 
In addition to having their artwork displayed on the contest Web site, the Alabama winners will have the opportunity to join talented young artists from across the country at the State-Fish Art Expo August 1-2, 2009, at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn. All winning artwork will be on display and an awards ceremony will recognize the winners before a large Mall crowd. One outstanding piece of artwork will win the Art of Conservation Stamp Award and be reproduced as a conservation stamp. Proceeds from the stamp will be used to fund conservation education and aquatic restoration projects across America.
 
One artist from grades 10-12 will be selected as the national “Best of Show” winner and will receive a $2,500 tuition scholarship to attend The Art Institutes International Minnesota. The first-runner-up in grades 10-12 will receive a $1,000 scholarship to the college. Each winning artist who attends the Expo will receive prizes, goodie bags, and fishing supplies. In 2005 Birmingham 10th grader Connery Carson was awarded the National Best of Show.
 
“Madelyn, Taylor and Anna have showcased the artistic talent of Alabama’s students by drawing attention to the diversity of fish species in our state,” said Barnett Lawley, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Commissioner. “We are proud of them and wish them luck at the national Expo.”
 
Douglas H. Grann, Wildlife Forever President is honored by the participation of Alabama’s students. “Together, we are using art to empower a new generation of conservationists.” Grann said. “By sharing their fish art with family, friends and the general public, our young people are becoming ambassadors for good stewardship of fish and wildlife habitat.”
 
Dr. Joe Morton, state Superintendent of Education, feels the State-Fish Art Contest helps to create well-rounded students. “This contest allows students to explore biology through an artistic lens. Hopefully, it also energizes boys and girls to pursue the topics at a deeper level as they advance through school possibly resulting in a fulfilling career in science or art,” Dr. Morton said.
 
Wildlife Forever is a non-profit conservation organization based in Minnesota that works to preserve America’s wildlife heritage through conservation education, preservation of habitat and scientific management of fish and wildlife species. Wildlife Forever projects in Alabama include the Alabama Goose Restoration Project, Flint Creek fish habitat improvements, and the Tsinia Wildlife Viewing Area at Alabama’s Tuskegee National Forest.
 
For more information about the contest, including photos of this year's winning art work and a complete list of rules and entry deadlines, visit www.statefishart.com.
 
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries.
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