An Alexandria teen-ager is a national finalist in a video contest presented by the American Bankers Association. 

Christian Thomas from West Potomac Academy was the winner of the local contest, called "Lights, Camera, Save!" and sponsored by Burke & Herbert Bank.  The annual contest encourages teens ages 13-18 to produce a short, 30-second film that communicates the importance of sound money management.

Thomas is one of eight students who have been selected to compete for several awards, including a $5,000 grand prize. The finalists will face off in a bracket-style tournament hosted on the association's Instagram page, starting Tuesday, March 23. Viewers will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite video to make it to the next rounds on March 24 and 25. The winning student will be announced on Friday, March 26.

Thomas’ video highlights the importance of monitoring expenses to reach future financial goals. His dynamic approach uses visual examples to engage a teen audience.

“All of us at Burke & Herbert Bank are thrilled that Christian is being recognized for finding such a creative and effective way to share valuable savings lessons with his peers,” said Terry Cole, executive vice president of the Alexandria-based bank. “We hope everyone in Northern Virginia will take a few minutes out of their day to support a local student and cast their vote for Christian Thomas.”

This year, 117 banks and 133 students from 47 states participated in the "Lights, Camera, Save!" program.

Burke & Herbert received entries from Arlington, Fairfax, Alexandria, and Prince William school districts. Sujay Khona of Fairfax Academy was awarded second place and Talia Levy of Hylton High School in Prince William won third place. Burke & Herbert Bank awarded the students $350, $100, and $50 gift cards, respectively. 

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