Illinois teen wins Federal Junior Duck Stamp contest
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that Abraham Hunter, of Vienna, Ill., has won the 2011-12 Federal Junior Duck Stamp competition. The 17-year-old's painting of a pair of ringneck ducks will grace the next Junior Duck stamp, which will be available for purchase beginning June 24.
"I’d like to congratulate our winning artist as well as the participants in the Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Program," said Rowan Gould, acting director of the Fish and Wildlife Service. "These young people not only possess amazing artistic talent, but are also future conservation stewards who will care for our birds, fish and other wild creatures."
Chosen by a panel of judges at the national Junior Duck Stamp design contest held Friday at the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia, the acrylic entry, which previously won the Illinois Junior Duck Stamp contest, was judged the winner among best-of-show entries from all 50 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Proceeds from the $5 stamp, prized by stamp collectors, conservationists and the general public, support environmental and conservation education programs in the United States.
Hunter will receive a $5,000 award as well as a trip to the First Day of Sale ceremony for the federal and junior duck stamps, to be held June 24 at the Bass Pro Shops store in Katy, Texas.
Foth the federal and junior duck stamp artists will sign stamps and first day covers at the ceremony, which is free and open to the public.
-- Kelly Burgess
Photo: The winning image that will appear on the 2011-12 Federal Junior Duck stamp. Credit: Abraham Hunter / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service