Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
November 22, 2011


The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) today announced the top 20 entries of their “Dance With Us: Motion Across Cultures” ExchangesConnect Photo Contest. James Quah Boon Kong from Malaysia and Paul Gordon Emerson from Washington, D.C. claimed top spots. Kong’s photo, “Pasut,” features traditional Malay dancers suspended in mid-air. Emerson’s photo captures the leap of a dancer in front of Wayna Picchu Mountain in Peru.

The competition celebrates ECA’s upcoming DanceMotion USA season, a program developed by the Department of State to acknowledge the significant role that dance plays in deepening cross-cultural understanding. The contest received 2004 entries from ExchangesConnect community members from 129 countries, bringing the community to over 35,000 members.

Each photographer earned the grand prize of an iPad 2, and their work will be featured on ECA websites and displayed at the Department of State in Washington, D.C. Eighteen runners-up will receive ExchangesConnect t-shirts and postcards featuring the top 20 submissions.

ExchangesConnect is a unique online community that hosts people-to-people dialogue among over 35,000 members about Department of State exchange programs and supports ECA’s mission to promote international mutual understanding through a wide range of academic, cultural, professional, and sports exchange programs.

Please visit ExchangesConnect today to view the winning photos.

Media Contact: John Fleming, FlemingJT2@state.gov; phone (202) 632-6454



PRN: 2011/1995