Press Release

BALTIMORE (April 21, 2006) – The Newton Marasco Foundation (NMF), in partnership with Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) and Maryland State Department of Education, today awarded nine Maryland high school students GreenFocus Awards for outstanding environmental photographs. The Grand Prize winner is Lydia Richards from Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, for her photo “Untitled,” which depicts still water on a sunny day shining through greenly lit trees.

Category winners include:

  • Flora & Fauna – Daniel Herman, Winston Churchill High School, Potomac
    ~ Honorable Mention: Sebastian Salas-Vega, Thomas S. Wootton High School, Rockville

  • People in the Environment – Shannon Carroll, James Hubert Blake High School, Silver Spring
    ~ Honorable Mention: Nicole Pagonis, Winston Churchill High School, Potomac

  • Water and the Bay – An Thien Nguyen, W.E.B. Dubois High School, Baltimore
    ~ Honorable Mention: Jessie Schroeder, Perry Hall High School, Baltimore

  • Winterscapes – Victoria Horten, Patuxent High School, Lusby
    ~ Honorable Mention: Alice Nieh, Winston Churchill High School, Potomac

NMF, in partnership with MDE and Maryland State Department of Education, established the GreenFocus – Earth Day 2006 still photography contest for Maryland high school students. The purpose of the award is to use the art of photography to raise community awareness and foster the environmental education of our nation’s youth.

“NMF has been amazed by the creativity, talent, and enthusiasm of the high school students in the State of Maryland,” said Amy Marasco Newton, president of Newton Marasco Foundation. “It’s heartening to the foundation that this next generation has so beautifully expressed its commitment to stewardship of our environment.”

The Grand Prize winner received a monetary prize of $300, and $200 was awarded to the winner’s high school. Each category winner received $125. All winners and honorable mentions also received special citations from Maryland Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.

Review of the submitted photos and selection of the winners was conducted by a diverse panel including professional photographers, environmental professionals, and education professionals. This year’s panel included MDE Secretary Kendl P. Philbrick and noted Chesapeake Bay photographer, Dave Harp.

“By participating in a worthwhile endeavor as this, we foster youths’ ingenuity and spirit while encouraging an environmental ethic to all,” Secretary Philbrick said. “We hope the continuing impact of this contest will be to inspire responsible action toward the environment.”

For more information about the Newton Marasco Foundation, the GreenFocus Award and the 2006 winners, a list of past winners, and award criteria, go to: