Rep. Sherrill Announces Congressional App Competition Winner

December 6, 2019
Press Release
Livingston’s Dina Brustein Designed App to Help Families Navigate the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP)

Washington, DC – Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) announced today that Livingston High School senior Dina Brustein is the winner of the 2019 Congressional App Competition for New Jersey’s 11th Congressional District. Dina’s SNAPApp helps low-income families get information about the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) in a centralized location. The SNAPApp allows SNAP recipients to check eligibility for SNAP and free school lunches, apply for SNAP, see what items are available to purchase with SNAP, and other benefits through the program.

“Forty-two million Americans rely on SNAP, including 818,000 New Jerseyans,” said Representative Sherrill. “The program is our first line of defense to combat hunger and food insecurity. Dina’s app cuts through bureaucratic red tape to make sure those who need these services can find the information they need. I applaud Dina for her commitment to harnessing technology to lift up our community, and I’d like to thank all our students who participated in the competition this year.”

Of the 818,000 New Jerseyans who relied on SNAP in 2017, more than 45 percent were working families, and 67 percent were families with children.

To watch a video about SNAPAppclick here.

Judges scored apps based on functionality, creativity, and user experience. Our judges were:

  • Shahram Dabiri, STEM Manager, Picatinny Arsenal, U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC) Armaments Center
  • Michael TirritoAssistant Professor, County College of Morris, Information Technologies Department
  • Hongbou Zhou, Assistant Professor, Montclair State University, Department of Computer Science 

The Congressional App Challenge launched in 2014 to encourage students nationwide to code. The Congressional App Challenge is designed to engage student creativity and encourage their participation in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education fields.

The competition was open to middle school and high school students who live or attend school in NJ-11. The full set of eligibility rules for individual and team entries can be found at