Patterson Law Group is pleased to announce that Julianne Thomison is the recipient of our firm’s annual #ArriveAliveTX Distracted Driving Scholarship. Ms. Thomison submitted an application and essay highlighting her work to end distracted driving, and in particular her advocacy to stop teen texting and driving. Per our scholarship requirements, she created an audience-specific anti-distracted driving campaign that she calls, Thumbs Up: That Text Can Wait! This campaign includes her already-in-development “anti-texting while driving app” with the same name. Ms. Thomison will use the $1,939 in scholarship money to further her studies at Oklahoma City University.
The #ArriveAliveTX Distracted Driving Scholarship awards $1,939 each year to a motivated student who creates a realistic distracted driving awareness campaign focused on reducing the number of vehicle accidents in Texas. Our law firm presents this amount in scholarship money to highlight the disturbing statistic that each week in Texas, there is an average of 1,939 distracted-driving related crashes.
Ms. Thomison’s application and essay highlight ways in which she has, and will continue to, advocate for helping people make better decisions on the road. And ultimately to curb the distracted driving epidemic—the #1 killer of American teens.
“Despite much positive progress, this overall issue of distracted driving continues to be a huge problem,” she says in her essay.
Ms. Thomison wrote to us, describing how her life changed 5 years ago when a woman who was texting and driving rear-ended a car she was in. Luckily, no one was seriously injured in the accident. But, as Ms. Thomison affirmed, this is not always the case. Almost immediately after that incident, Ms. Thomison became the senior spokesperson for Generation tXt, a student-led organization where like-minded teens commit to raising awareness about the dangers of texting and driving.
Ms. Thomison spoke to more than 50,000 people as a member of the peer-to-peer Generation tXt group, at more than 400 events including a direct meeting at a Fortune 500 company and 3 State Capitol press conferences. These talks collectively were her first step in advocating for behavioral and legal change, and her basis for developing the Thumbs Up: That Text Can Wait! app.
Thumbs Up: That Text Can Wait! extends the reach of Ms. Thomison’s message by encouraging positive behavioral compliance. The “anti-texting while driving” app requires users to sign a pledge at download to “not text and drive,” and prompts users to select 3 accountability partners who receive compliance and non-compliance emails.
Drivers face many obstacles on the road. This is especially true among teen drivers, who are so used to having technology in their hands at almost all times. Ms. Thomison hopes that through technology, she can encourage good driving behavior and reduce the number of unfortunate injuries and deaths on our nation’s roads.