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Rep. Thompson Announces Congressional Art Competition Winner for 5th District

U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson announced Stella Li from Benicia High School in Solano County as the winner of the 2016 Congressional Art Competition for the 5th Congressional District.


U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5) announced Stella Li from Benicia High School in Solano County as the winner of the 2016 Congressional Art Competition for the 5th Congressional District. Li’s work, titled “Memories of my Grandmother”, will be displayed in the U.S. Capitol for one year beginning in June. Li and a guest will be flown to Washington, D.C. in June to attend a ceremony at the Capitol honoring the students who were selected as winners from congressional districts across our country.

“Congratulations to Stella Li on being named our district’s 2016 Congressional Art Competition winner,” said Thompson. “I will be proud to see Stella’s “Memories of my Grandmother” as I walk between my office and the Capitol in the year ahead. Every year I am impressed by the creativity and talent of our student artists and this year was no different. Many thanks to every student who participated in this year’s competition, each piece submitted was outstanding.”

Li used colored pencil and graphite to depict a young girl combing her grandmother’s hair. In her own words, Li said “I’ve loved art for as long as I can remember, but only really picked it up as a hobby when I was 12, when I realized that it would allow me to express anything I wanted, regardless of how shy I was. The piece is a tribute to my grandmother, who I was close to before her death. I wanted to portray a scene that not only showed how warm my memories of her remain, but also revealed her gentle spirit. I’m very excited and honored to have won – I hadn’t been expecting to.”

Mr. Dan Frazier, Stella’s teacher at Benicia High School said, “Stella Li’s piece, “Memories of my Grandmother”, is a lovely drawing of a remembered family moment done in my Advanced Placement Art Studio class. Stella’s work is a testament to the value of fundamentals in art and a credit to her school. We are super excited to have this chance to recognize one of our own on the national stage! Benicia High Art is based on a marriage of classic principles and the new technologies, and we are supported by a fantastic community here in beautiful Benicia.”

Li was one of five regional winners chosen by local artist judges. The four other finalists were:

  • Contra Costa County winner: Nikolas Childers of College Park High School
  • Lake County winner: Lorena Rosiles of Kelseyville High School
  • Napa County winner: Isabel Conversano of Vintage High School
  • Sonoma County winner: Saskia Rechin of Rincon Valley Christian School

Li’s work was selected as the winning entry by a panel of local artist judges who chose between her piece and the artwork of the other regional winners from the 5th Congressional District.

The Congressional Art Competition began in 1982 to provide an opportunity for Members of Congress to encourage and recognize the artistic talents of their young constituents. Since then, over 650,000 high school students have been involved with the nation-wide competition.


Photos of Li’s piece and the four other pieces recognized are included below.


“Memories of my Grandmother” – Stella Li


Lake County winner – Lorena Rosiles


Sonoma County winner – Saskia Rechin


Napa County winner – Isabel Conversano


Contra Costa County winner – Nikolas Childers

Congressman Mike Thompson is proud to represent California’s 5th Congressional District, which includes all or part of Contra Costa, Lake, Napa, Solano and Sonoma Counties.  He is a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee. Rep. Thompson is also a member of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition and chairs the bipartisan, bicameral Congressional Wine Caucus.