Newsroom > DHHS News Release

January 14, 2012
Marla Augustine, Communications and Legislative Services, (402) 471-4047 or
Student Posters Highlight Radon Risks
Lincoln–The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Radon Program recently announced the winners of its annual Nebraska Radon Poster Contest for students ages 9–14.
JoAnn Neel, a student at McCook Junior High School, was awarded first place with her poster, “Get Your Home Tested.” Second place was awarded to Sophie Stewart of Russell Middle School in Omaha, and in third place was Karissa Dicke of Pope John Central Catholic School in Elgin.
The three students received a gift card prize, and their posters were entered into the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Radon Poster Contest. Neel’s poster was awarded third place in the national contest, and she will receive a $400 gift card and national recognition for her achievement.
The poster contest is held each year to highlight the risks posed by exposure to indoor radon, which is a radioactive gas that causes thousands of lung cancer deaths each year, and to send the message that radon testing can save lives. Over 550 students in Nebraska participated in this year’s contest.
“Radon is a leading cause of lung cancer, second only to smoking. This contest helps to increase radon awareness among students, teachers, and parents in communities across Nebraska,” said Sara Morgan, Radon Program Manager.
While high radon levels (4.0 picocuries per liter or higher) are common in Nebraska, many people are unaware of the risks, according to Morgan. Inexpensive radon test kits can be used to measure indoor radon, and there are also ways to reduce high levels of radon in homes. 
To learn more about radon, visit or contact the Nebraska Radon Program at 1-888-334-9491.
The Radon Program is part of the DHHS Division of Public Health.