U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

News Release


National Wildlife Refuge


371 North River Street, Swanton, VT 05488-8148


802/868-4781 Fax: 802/868-2379 http://northeast.fws.gov

April 8, 2003


Missisquoi Valley Union Student wins Best Of Show

In the 2003 Vermont Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest



Edward Gagne, 16, of Highgate, Vermont and a student at Missisquoi Valley Union Highschool placed Best of Show in the Vermont Federal Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest sponsored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge. Edward’s winning entry was an oil painting of a pair of Ring Neck Ducks entitled "Campbell’s Bay Marshers".

Edward submitted his rendering of the ring neck ducks to the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge in March. His entry was judged, by a panel of five judges including David Sausville, Jenna Speer, Jeremy Brooks, Ron Kilburn, and Dick Rollo, as being best of show from among 192 entries received from across the state. Students in kindergarten through highschool may enter the contest each year. First, second, and third place winners are selected in each of four age groups. Many other entries receive honorable mention awards.

The first place winners of each group are as follows:

Group I (K-3):

Alec Jackson of Reading, Shannon Simmons of Shelburne, and Britta Clark of Middleburg.

Group II (4-6):

Samuel Zelley of Fairfax, Mariah Woodward of Fairfax, and Abbie Gordon of Essex Jct.

Group III (7-9):

Ben Nagar, Michael Scott, and Britney Ruley all of Poultney.

Group IV (10-12):

Edward Gagne of Highgate, Ryan Skinner of Essex Jct., and Eben Witherspoon of Lyndon Center.


Every state, as well as the District of Columbia, participates in the Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design contest. The contest is modeled after the Service’s Federal Duck Stamp Art competition. The Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest is part of an innovative educational curriculum that teaches students in grades K-12 about wetlands and waterfowl conservation.

Edward’s "Best of Show" winning design for Vermont was sent to Washington, DC, where three national winners will be chosen by a panel of judges. The first place winner receives a $4,000 cash award and a free trip to Washington, DC in the fall to attend the adult Federal Duck Stamp Contest, along with his/her art teacher, one of his/her parents, and his/her state coordinator. The national first place winning design is used to produce the Federal Junior Duck Stamp. The Second Place Winner receives a $2,000 cash award; and the third Place Winner receives a $1,000 cash award.

For more information about the contest in Vermont contact the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge, 371 North River St., Swanton, VT 05488: telephone (802) 868-4781.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal Federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting, and enhancing fish and wildlife and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 93-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System comprised of more than 500 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands, and other special management areas. It also operates 66 national fish hatcheries, 64 fish and wildlife management offices, and 78 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces Federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Aid program that distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.