2016 Highway Safety Poster Contest Winners

Each year, Caltrans holds its Annual Highway Safety Poster contest. The contest is open to the children and grandchildren of Caltrans employees, and it gives the children an opportunity to express their messages about the importance of driving safely in or near highway work zones. It also allows them to be part of Caltrans' educational outreach and life-saving message.

The contest was open to children 17 years old or younger, and judges selected posters based on creativity, how well the poster conveyed the highway safety theme and the use of color.

The winning posters appeared in the Annual Workers Memorial program and were on display at the ceremony. Although the posters differ greatly in appearance, they all convey one of these important messages, "Be Work Zone Alert" or " "Move Over." 


Below are the Winning Posters and a Brief Introduction to the Creators

Winner 14 – 17 year olds

Brianna Wood’s Dad is Caltrans Maintenance Area Superintendent Dave Wood, who works in District 3’s Kingvale station.

Brianna is a 15-year-old ninth-grader and enjoys her pets, dancing, old movies, and playing in the snow. Her hobbies include singing and playing the piano, drawing, reading, and spending time with her family. She loves California and enthusiastically notes she is a fifth-generation native Californian.

Brianna sums up the responsibilities of Caltrans and California drivers as, “Safely building and maintaining roads is what Caltrans does. Safely using the roads to get where they are going is what Californians need to do.”

Brianna Wood
Poster creator winners

Winner 11 – 13 year olds

Jocelyn Nguyen is the 11-year-old daughter of District 4 Engineers Viet and Quynh Phu Nguyen.

This fifth-grader has a number of favorite things: the color blue, sports, outdoors, baking, arts, crafts, traveling and animals – with dogs at the top of that list. She also enjoys playing the piano and swimming.

Jocelyn thinks that the “Be Work Zone Alert” message is important because she has seen many incidents and wants to reduce their occurrence so that “less lives will be in danger.”

Jocelyn Nguyen
Poster creator winners

Winner 7 – 10 year olds

Elissa Yan is the 10-year-old daughter of Junxia Wu and Zihan Yan who both work to maintain California’s bridges in the Headquarters office of Structure Maintenance and Investigations.

Elissa is a fifth-grade “Rapid Learner” student whose hobbies include karate, piano, studying Chinese and participating in band.

She also enjoys movies, traveling, reading, riding her bike, and technology, including making videos. Elissa’s message is about awareness because, “Many drivers don’t pay attention to the road (texting and driving)… and many workers and other people could get hurt badly or even die if a distracted driving incident were to occur.”

Elissa Yan
Poster creator winners

Winner 6 years old and younger

Ashna Vaikunthan is the 5-year-old daughter of Vaikunthan Renganathan, a Civil Engineer in Caltrans’ Headquarters office.

While she would like to be a doctor someday, her current activities include painting pictures, ballet and gymnastic classes, playing with teddy bears, and watching Peppa Pig.

Ashna asks drivers to consider her idea to increase safety awareness when driving near a work zone, “When you are driving if you see Caltrans cones, think of these cones as kids. Do you want to hit the kids? The answer is no.”    

Ashna Vaikunthan
Poster creator winners


Below are the Honorable Mention Winners



Honorable Mention winners Honorable Mention winners