HMLC names teen contest winners

More than $3,000 in cash prizes were awarded to 26 winners of the Eighth Annual Holocaust Museum and Learning Center’s Annual Art and Writing Contest. More than 600 entries from middle school and high school students throughout the bi-state area were received. Students from public schools, religious schools of several faiths and home schoolers participated in the competition.

According to Rachel Katzman, contest committee chair, “The judges were especially challenged this year by the range of art and writing. Paintings, drawings, collages and videos were submitted in the art category, while reports, poetry, reflective essays and short plays were submitted in the writing category. Many of the entries were powerful, moving, thought-provoking and creative.”

Daniel Reich, HMLC curator and director of education, noted, “This contest provides students who have visited the Museum or studied the Holocaust in their classrooms the opportunity to respond in a creative way to this difficult, though important, subject matter. We are so grateful to Dr. Ira and Judy Gall for their ongoing support for this significant outreach education program. As in previous years, the contest is dedicated to the memory of the 1.5 million children who perished during the Holocaust.” Additional support comes from the Regional Arts Commission of St. Louis and Regions Bank.

Winning submissions will be displayed at the St. Louis Galleria from Aug. 2 through 27.

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Judges for the art entries were John Lesser, longtime curator of the art gallery, JCC and JCC Cultural Arts Staff, and Andrew Millner, a St. Louis artist.

Judges for writing were Lolle Boettcher, Holocaust educator and retired teacher, Dana Humphrey, Holocaust Museum educator and St. Louis teacher, and Sandy Snodgrass, retired teacher, currently with the St. Louis Community Colleges.

Winners of the 2010 Art and Writing Contest are:


• First Place: Eden Harir of Ballwin; 8th grade, Parkway West Middle School (submitted independently)

• Second Place: Hannah Muckerman of St. Louis; 8th Grade, St. Catherine Laboure School (Teacher: Linda-Jo Hauf)

• Third place: Abigail Miller of St. Louis; 7th Grade, Solomon Schechter Day School of St. Louis (Teacher: Mary Winslow)


• FIRST PLACE: Josh Keen of Lee’s Summit, Mo.; 11th Grade, Blue Ridge Christian School (Teacher: Kendra L. Kennedy)

• SECOND PLACE: Melena Abojaoude of Lake St. Louis, Mo.; 10th Grade, Barat Academy (Teacher: Ann Marie Hardy)

• Third place: Ashleigh Easton of Arnold, Mo.; 11th Grade, Fox High School (Teacher: Derick Holdenried)


• First Place: Tim Zmudzinski of Collierville, Tenn; 7th Grade, Central Day School (Teacher: Jodi Latimer)

• Second Place: Samantha Patillo of Cromwell, Ind.; 8th Grade, West Noble Middle School (Teacher: Chris DeVries)

• Third Place: Rennie Svirnovskiy of Chesterfield; 7th Grade, Crestview Middle School (submitted independently)


• First Place: Becky Kirchner of Nashville, Ill. ; 12th Grade, Nashville Community High School (Teacher: Sara Kollbaum)

• Second Place: Chelsey Hafford of Nashville, Ill.; 12th Grade, Nashville Community High School (Teacher: Sara Kollbaum)

• Third Place: Anny Deninno of Springfield, Mo.; 12th Grade, Central High School (Teacher: Ken Elkins)