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Hamilton teacher wins Woodie Flowers Award in Evanston

John Budish, Hamilton High School science teacher and Robotics Team advisor, was awarded the prestigious Woodie Flowers Award March 26 in Evanston. The award is presented to an inspiring adult leader who communicates the art and science of engineering and design as part of the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Robotics Program.

Budish received the award at the closing ceremony of the Midwest Robotics Regional Competition in Evanston. The award was created by a FIRST founder in honor of Professor Woodie Flowers.

Each team may nominate one candidate for the honor by submitting an essay that answers the question: “How did the candidate inspire your team?” By winning the regional Woodie Flowers Award, Budish is eligible to compete for the national award presented in Atlanta in April.

The Hamilton Charger Robotics team also earned one of two Judges’ Awards for effectively spreading the word about the FIRST program throughout the community and developing a student-based team.

FIRST Robotics partners professionals and young people to solve an engineering design problem through intense competition. The program was established by inventor and entrepreneur Dean Kamen to encourage students to explore careers in science and technology. Each year teams of high school students work closely with engineers, programmers, machinists and other professionals to meet the challenge of a new game put out by FIRST. Hamilton’s team receives funding and engineering support from GE Healthcare, Rockwell Automation, Pentair Water and other donors.

People interesting in learning more about the Robotics Program or supporting the Hamilton Chargers team may contact Budish by calling Hamilton High School at (262) 246-6471 voicemail 1467 or e-mailing him at