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Womack Honors Winners of the Congressional App Challenge

Fayetteville and Springdale high school students recognized for developing app focused on enhancing public safety

ARKANSAS—January 3, 2020….Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) today honored Julian Sanker, an 11th grader at Haas Hall Academy (Fayetteville), and Lucas Kellar, a 10th grader at the Don Tyson School of Innovation (Springdale), for winning the 2019 Congressional App Challenge. The annual and nationwide coding competition for middle school and high school students aims to encourage our nation’s youth to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education and computer science careers.  

Congressman Womack said, “Our students are the next generation of innovators, and it’s great to see them leverage their skills both inside and outside the classroom. I congratulate Julian and Lucas on this impressive accomplishment, which characterizes the ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit that has inspired Arkansans for generations. This competition continually showcases the brilliant young minds of the Third District, and I look forward to seeing where their technical and coding capabilities lead them in the future.” 

Julian and Lucas’s winning app, Crime Map, uses publicly available crime and emergency data to populate an interactive and real-time map. Residents can search the map to see 911 dispatches in the area and learn of emergency situations and danger in their community. The application also features custom icons that illustrate the nature of the call and allows users to filter the data by different categories. More information about the winning app can be found here.

Womack honored the students with certificates and medallions at a ceremony at Fairlane Station in Springdale. Entries were reviewed by a panel of local technology experts and judged on originality, creativity, and quality of the app design. The judges included Jeff Amerine, Phyl Amerine, and Haley Allgood of Startup Junkie. Crime Map will be featured on a digital display in the U.S. Capitol and on the Congressional App Challenge website. 

This is the fifth year that Womack has hosted the Congressional App Challenge in Arkansas’s Third Congressional District, and he looks forward to hosting the competition again in 2020. More than 22 students from Benton, Pope, and Washington counties participated in the 2019 program.

Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) has represented Arkansas’s Third Congressional District since 2011. He serves as the Ranking Member of the House Committee on the Budget and is a member of the House Appropriations defense and transportation, housing and urban development subcommittees.