2016 Award Winners

Illinois State Championship

TeachersNaperville CUSD 203 swept the Personal Finance Challenge State Finals!  Naperville Central High School earned First Place and Naperville North High School earned Second Place this year in the 2016 Illinois Personal Finance Challenge (IPFC) State Finals, a program of Econ Illinois. The event, held April 26 at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, involved 10 high school teams from seven high schools advancing to compete for the Championship title. The program saw 487 students participate statewide in the online preliminary round of competition in March.

Naperville Central outscored Second Place Naperville North after a final “Quiz Bowl” round of competition. The First Place team, Kevin Angell, Neal Hasan, John Laboe, Luke Liu, and teacher David Ashton received a trophy and framed certificate for their school, individual medals and certificates as well as Visa gift cards. 

The championship event included individual, team and quiz bowl rounds of competition throughout the day. Tested topics included: Earning Income and Protecting & Insuring; Using Credit and Buying Goods & Services; and Saving & Financial Investing. This year student teams were also involved with a Critical Thinking activity that required addressing a financial scenario and presenting their findings to a finance professional judge.

The Naperville Central team advanced to represent Illinois in the National Personal Finance Challenge held in Kansas City on May 6, competing against teams from all participating states.

Naperville North tested well at the state finals, advancing to the final “Quiz Bowl” round of competition but was not able to outscore Naperville Central. The Second Place team, Max Krauskopf, Sebastian Leder Macek, Charlie Ovens, Dharmesh Thakkar, and teacher Eleanor Barbino received a trophy and framed certificate for their school, individual medals and certificates as well as Visa gift cards.

First Place Team

The First Place team, Kevin Angell, Neal Hasan, John Laboe, Luke Liu, and teacher David Ashton.

Second Place Team

Second Place team, Max Krauskopf, Sebastian Leder Macek, Charlie Ovens, Dharmesh Thakkar, and teacher Eleanor Barbino

Illinois Participants in Finance Challenge ONLINE! 2016

Teams from the following eighteen schools competed online for the 2016 Personal Finance Challenge. The number of asterisks (*) indicate the number of teams at the school that advanced to the state finals.  All schools participating in the state event receive a certificate of recognition.

High School

  • Beecher City High School, Beecher City. Kristine Sayers, teacher.
  • *Collinsville High School, Collinsville. Vicki Fuhrhop, teacher.
  • East Aurora High School, Aurora. Michelle Miller, teacher.
  • *La Salle Peru Township High School, La Salle. Scott Lauer, teacher.
  • *Lyons Township High School, LaGrange. Julie Bryar-Smith, teacher
  • Mt. Vernon Township High School, Mt. Vernon. Christi McGee, teacher.
  • **Naperville Central High School, Naperville. C. David Ashton II, teacher.
  • *Naperville North High School, Naperville. Eleanor Barbino, teacher.
  • Neuqua Valley High School, Naperville. Kevin Geers, teacher.
  • Ottawa Township High School, Ottawa. Ryan Gunderson, teacher.
  • *Palatine High School, Palatine. Brent Carroll, teacher.
  • Patoka CUSD #100, Patoka. Theresa King, teacher.
  • ROE Alternative, Zion. Larry Leck, teacher.
  • Scales Mound High School, Scales Mound. Les Virtue, teacher.
  • South Shore International College Prep High School, Chicago. Joan Kane, teacher.
  • Waubonsie Valley High School, Aurora. Bryan Acevedo, teacher.
  • **Waubonsie Valley High School, Aurora. Angie Hysjulien, teacher.
  • West Chicago Community High School, West Chicago. Candace Fikis, teacher.

NEW! 2016 saw the addition of the Illinois Personal Finance Challenge for the middle school level of competition. This inaugural year there were 2 schools that participated in the online competition with a total of 18 student teams. The first, second and third place winning teams that outscored all other students were from St. Gilbert School in Grayslake. Winning students and their teacher received a certificate of recognition and a medal. The winners include:

  • First Place – Cara DeLaclyuse, Mary Huiras, Janie Schulz, Katie Young
  • Second Place – Matt Edejer, Ben Geoffroy, Ethan Haqq, Jason Hironimus
  • Third Place – Allen Abraham, Nolan Cunningham, Matt Powers, Hunter Subrey

Middle School

  • St. Gilbert School, Grayslake. Kristine Buckley, teacher.
  • St. Vincent Ferrer School, River Forest. Edward Sanchez, teacher.

The 2016 Illinois Personal Finance Challenge (IPFC) is a program of Econ Illinois receiving support from BMO Harris with in-kind support provided by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. IPFC is endorsed by Illinois State Treasurer Michael W. Frerichs and the STEM Finance Learning Exchange.


Illinois Personal Finance ChallengeOpens a new window

Illinois Personal Finance Challenge is a signature program of Econ IL.

Bank of America

Thank you to Bank of America for funding this program.