Vans Custom Culture, 2014 National Champions

Top Row: Ryan Castaneda, Nicholas Morris, Trevor Amestoy, Julie Nyugen
Upper Middle Row: Esteban Garcia, Evelyn Pope, Jordan Williams, Angel Griego, Josiah Concho, Jacob Peck
Lower Middle Row: Angela Tafuro, Nikki Jackson, Erin Woolley, Dana Sharp, Nicholas Tarufo, Alina Pozas, Julianna Sy
Bottom Row: Matthew Lutz,
Jahnise Jojola, Jacob Lutz
Not Pictured:
Hayley Davidson

In 2014, twenty students from Rio Rancho High School competed against teams from 2179 registered high schools across the United States to win the 5th annual Vans Custom Culture shoe design contest for a third time.

In the first round of the contest, Vans selected the top 10 schools in each region. Round two involved an intense online voting campaign; Rio Rancho emerged as number one in the Southwest. At the final round in New York City, a panel of celebrity judges awarded Rio Rancho the grand prize of $50,000, and the team got to see the national award-winning shoes featured on the Today Show. Upon returning home, the prize money was shared among all K-12 visual art teachers in Rio Rancho Public Schools, and all Fine Arts teachers at Rio Rancho High School.

Vans fully funded all the transportation, accommodations, food, entertainment, and other expenses for the trip from Albuquerque to NYC for team members and chaperones; it was amazing! The Local Flavor shoe was reproduced by Vans and was sold in select Vans stores accross the United States. The experience would have been impossible without the artistically gifted and hard working students of Rio Rancho, the support of the local community, and God's blessing. Thank you for an amazing journey, Vans!


Rio Rancho, Vans Custom Culture, Action Sports Shoes


Rio Rancho, Vans Custom Culture, Art Shoes


Rio Rancho, Vans Custom Culture, Local Flavor Shoes


Rio Rancho, Vans Custom Culture, Music Shoes


Rio Rancho Vans Team on the way to NYC


Gene Kimura and Esteban Garcia


Alina Pozas


Vans Team enjoying Korean burritos


Evie Pope


JJ Jojola and Julianna Sy


Times Square


Josiah Concho, Jacob Peck, and Angel Griego


Rio Rancho Vans Team in Central Park


Vans Custom Culture Final Event


Jacob Lutz with the 2010 Vans Custom Culture shoes in NYC


The 2012 Vans Custom Culture shoes in NYC


Jordan Williams: 2012 and 2014 Vans Custom Culture National Champion
Evie Pope: 2012 and 2014 Vans Custom Culture National Champion
Jacob Lutz: 2010, 2012, and 2014 Vans Custom Culture National Champion


Jordan Willians and Josiah Concho at the Vans Custom Culture Final Event


2014 Vans Custom Culture National Campions


Alina Pozas with $50,000 check from Vans!


Rio Rancho Vans Team opens the Vans Custom Culture box of white shoes


Vans Custom Culture, a blank canvase


A work session in Fine Arts 102


Josiah Concho presents his design for the local flavor shoes


Hayley Davidson reviews design ideas


Alina Pozas, Vans Custom Culture


Angel Griego, Vans Custom Culture


Angela Tafuro, Vans Custom Culture


Dana Sharp, Vans Custom Culture


Erin Wooley, Vans Custom Culture


Esteban Garcia, Vans Custom Culture


Evie Pope, Vans Custom Culture


Hayley Davidson, Vans Custom Culture


Jacob Lutz, Vans Custom Culture


Jacob Peck, Vans Custom Culture


JJ Jojola, Vans Custom Culture


Jordan Williams, Vans Custom Culture


Josiah Concho, Vans Custom Culture


Julianna Sy, Vans Custom Culture


Julie Nyugen, Vans Custom Culture


Nick Morris, Vans Custom Culture


Nick Tafuro, Vans Custom Culture


Nikki Jackson, Vans Custom Culture


Ryan Castaneda, Vans Custom Culture


Trevor Amestoy, Vans Custom Culture


Digital design for Rio Rancho High School production shoes


Rio Rancho High School production shoes


Shoe Party with the amazing 2014 Vans Team