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Santa Clara County Library Announces Children's Art Contest and Teen Photography Winners

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. — The Santa Clara County Library District announced this week the winners of the “We America” Art Contest. Nearly 200 children in grades kindergarten through 8th submitted original art work for the art contest, and six were selected for the top prizes.
 “It’s heartening to see how young people embrace America and its democratic values,” said Gilbert Wong, Library District Board Chair.  “This project helps to instill the values of citizenship and active participation into the youngest members of our democracy.” 
Contest winners are Poem Shiuey, age 6, Archit Bhattacharyya, age 5, Phillip Baek, age 10, Kimberly Fong, age 9, Rhee Kang, age 12, and Mary Jo Izabel Mendoza, age 11.
Four digital photographs were selected as winning entries according to a public vote in the Library’s “Democracy Is” contest for teens in grades 6 through 12. The winning photographers are Stella Xu, Victor Liu, Janani Mohan and Kathryn Stamp. 
 “This artwork and photography reflects thoughtfulness and pride,” said County of Santa Clara Supervisor Mike Wasserman, Santa Clara County Library District Joint Powers Authority Delegate. “Giving children the opportunity to explore democracy through art helps prepare them to be educated, engaged citizens.” 
The art contest was judged by Cupertino Library Commissioners Ann Stevenson and Janet Riddell, Toby Librande, Early Literacy Coordinator for the Milpitas Unified School District, and Santa Clara County Library staff Gail Mason, Cen Campbell and Ron Garavaglia.
“We are very pleased with the response from our young patrons in our efforts to promote literacy and involvement,” said County Librarian Nancy Howe.  “I commend participants for their talent and commitment to illustrate what civic participation means to them.” 
The We Are America and Democracy Is contests are in support of “Searching for Democracy,” a California Reads program in partnership with CalHumanities.

The winning art works will be on display at all Santa Clara County Community Libraries from November 2012- February 2013, beginning with the Morgan Hill Library.  All contest art works will be featured on the Santa Clara County Library District web site. Contest winners will receive a certificate signed by the judges, a book, a gift card and a 150+ piece art supply kit. 
About the Santa Clara County Library District 
Known as one of America’s best 100 public libraries, the Santa Clara County Library District promotes knowledge, ideas, and cultural enrichment. Its collection includes 1.8 million books, videos, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, eBooks and extensive online resources that users can access from home or work.
For eleven years, the Library has ranked as one of the best in the nation for its size by Hennen’s American Public Library Ratings, which uses 15 different benchmark measures such as collections, circulation, visits and customer service.  Also recognized as one of America’s 2011 Star Libraries by Library Journal and with more than 3.8 million visits each year, the Santa Clara County Library District loans 9.8 million items each year and is one of the most-used public resources in the region. 

Established by the County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors in 1914, the Santa Clara County Library District includes two bookmobiles, an online library, seven community libraries and one branch library serving, Campbell, Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Saratoga and the unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County. In 2011, Santa Clara County Library had 366,035 library card holders, recorded 3,341,593 visitors, and a circulation of 10,945,949 items.  Visit Santa Clara County Library online at


Media Contact: Gwendolyn Mitchell/Marina Hinestrosa, Office of Public Affairs, (408) 299-5119; Nancy Howe, Santa Clara County Library (408) 293-2326, ext 3001; Jane Cronkhite, Santa Clara County Library (408) 293-2326 ext. 3080 

Posted: November 14, 2012