April 23, 2019


For media inquires about 4-H Exploding Bacon Robotics please contact:
Elise Cronin-Hurley, explodingbacon.team1902@gmail.com

Houston, TX – 4-H Exploding Bacon Robotics, a pre-college robotics team located in Central Florida, won the Championship Chairman’s Award at the 2019 FIRST Robotics World Championship event in Houston, Texas. They are the first team from Florida to earn the award.

The team was selected from a field of 43 teams who qualified to compete for the award by winning the Regional Chairman’s Award at events around the world.

The Chairman’s Award is the most prestigious award given at the annual event and honors a team judged to have had the most significant, measurable impact on the world, inspiring young people to appreciate and pursue careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math.

The team’s robot, built for this year’s competition and named Ham Solo, performed well. After a grueling qualification schedule Solo was picked for the number three alliance, and made it to the semi-finals in the Newton division.

In addition to winning Chairman’s, Exploding Bacon will be inducted into the FIRST Robotics Hall of Fame, a group of 28 teams from Canada, Australia, and a number of US states, who have won the award since its inception in 1992.

“I am incredibly proud to have the students, mentors, and alumni from Exploding Bacon as part of the FIRST community,” said Donald E. Bossi, president of FIRST, in an email. “From joining me in representing FIRST in front of corporate sponsors to sharing the experiences of successful women and girls in FIRST through the #FIRSTLikeAGirl campaign, their work is helping to advance the FIRST mission of improving our culture and inspiring broader participation in STEM. Congratulations to everyone involved in Exploding Bacon on their well-deserved Chairman’s Award at the 2019 FIRST Championship in Houston – the highest honor our community bestows on a team.”

During the team’s 14 year history in the FIRST program they have won the Regional Chairman’s award seven times, as well as being honoured as one of three Houston Championship Chairman’s Finalists in 2017. The team has also won 43 other awards from the 38 official FIRST events at which they’ve completed.

Jordan, the team’s robot driver and a 4th year student on the team, said “Exploding Bacon is one big family that I am so proud to be a part of. They have shown me that it’s okay to have insecurities and they give me opportunities to showcase my abilities. Being a part of this team doesn’t just give things like helping others deeper meaning, it also gives me meaning.”


4-H Exploding Bacon Robotics is an Orange County 4-H club that helps students explore and understand STEM by combining the principles of 4-H and the tenets of FIRST’s Gracious Professionalism.

As a 4-H team, Exploding Bacon is able to draw students from all over the state of Florida. Spanning 4 counties and 12 different schools plus homeschoolers, Exploding Bacon gives students without a school based FIRST team the opportunity to participate in the program.

In addition to competitions, Exploding Bacon demonstrates their robots at various community and professional events and conferences. In total, Exploding Bacon has participated in over 100 events in the Central Florida area over the past three years.

Exploding Bacon’s Spark Science Kits and #FIRSTLikeAGirl outreach programs have made an impact worldwide by providing STEM inspiration to students around the world with fewer resources and empowering young women to be more confident to participate in STEM activities and careers.

For more information about 4-H Exploding Bacon Robotics, please visit www.explodingbacon.com or contact explodingbacon.team1902@gmail.com.


FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is a non-profit organization that promotes STEM to K-12 grades by engaging them in exciting robotics competitions. These competitions are designed to challenge students and inspire them to learn more about science and technology. The program also prepares them to be future leaders in STEM industries and businesses around the world.

For more information about FIRST, please visit www.firstinspires.org.

Large 300 dpi Version 17.4MB

Large 300 dpi Version 18.8MB