From March 1st to 3rd, 2024, the excitement was palpable at the Silicon Valley Regional, which debuted at its new location, the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds. The event attracted a competitive gathering of 42 teams from across California, Nevada, Hawaii, Idaho, and Mexico. For mentor networking and appreciation, a special lunch was provided for mentors got to mingle, enjoy a meal, and participate in a Q&A session with Lonny Weissman, FIRST Senior Mentor, and Luan Heimlich, Regional Director. Additionally, the event celebrated Women in STEM with a cozy gathering where attendees enjoyed desserts and the chance to connect with fellow women in the field.

The competition itself did not disappoint, boasting a high level of challenge and excitement, especially impressive for a week 1 event.  With Team 1678 on the winning alliance and also winning the Impact Award, this generated a Wildcard for Team 8048.  And fun fact – Team 8048 mentor is the father of Team 1678 mentor!  FIRST is definitely a family affair.

The event was also host to several VIPs, including those from Intuitive and Altair. We’d like to extend an immense THANK YOU to all the sponsors, mentors and volunteers who contributed to this very successful Regional. 


The following teams and individuals earned top honors at the Silicon Valley Regional and earned their way to compete at the FIRST Championships in Houston, April 17-20, 2024.

FIRST Impact Award

The FIRST Impact Award is the most prestigious award at FIRST, it honors the team that best represents a model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the purpose and goals of FIRST.   

The FIRST Impact Award is presented to the team judged to have the most significant measurable impact of its partnerships among its participants and community over a sustained period, not just a single build season. The winner is able to demonstrate progress towards FIRST’s mission of transforming our culture.  The recipient team will be invited to a FIRST Championship where it will compete for the FIRST Impact Award against winners from other qualifying events.

This team combines COMPREHENSIVE local outreach with HUGE support to fellow FIRST teams. In their community, ONE IN FIVE of all students participate in their camps or youth leagues. These programs are more than SELF-SUSTAINING, allowing them to EXPAND to new underserved areas and fix up other team’s robots with a signature FLAVOR. Even when they are not competing, this team attends FRC events to provide tools, parts, and EXPERTISE to other teams. They also participate in Women in STEM events, co-host off-season competitions, and help other teams emulate their SUCCESSFUL SYLLABUS. 

Engineering Inspiration

The Engineering Inspiration Award celebrates outstanding success in advancing respect and appreciation for engineering within a team’s school and community.  This team will advance to the Championships and receive a $5000 NASA grant toward registration.


  • Team 3008, Team Magma from Honolulu, Hawaii

This team’s outreach is multi-dimensional and INSPIRING. Besides mentoring many FLL and FTC teams, hosting qualifiers, and having an ongoing academy for elementary students. Helping teachers, a new path, raising money and building a MOBILE LAB to help teachers gain experience and confidence with STEM tools and curriculum. Developing and raising money for a FTC hackathon for the islands, their INSPIRING WORK became caused an ERUPTION of eight FTC teams.

Regional Winners

  • Team 581, Blazing Bulldogs from San Jose, CA
  • Team 1678, Citrus Circuits from Davis, CA
  • Team 8048, Team HH Churrobots from East Palo Alto, CA

Dean’s List Finalist

In an effort to recognize the leadership and dedication of FIRST’s most outstanding FRC students, the Kamen family sponsors an award for selected top students known as the FIRST Dean’s List. This award celebrates a student’s outstanding leadership and effectiveness in advancing respect and appreciation for engineering and engineers, both within their school, as well as their community. FIRST Dean’s List Finalists will compete at the championship for the FIRST Dean’s List.

  • Miriam M from Team 1671, The Jankster
  • Corrine G from Team 1351, TKO

Woodie Flowers Finalist Award

FIRST stands apart from other competitions in STEM and sports due to the FIRST Ethos of Gracious Professionalism, the concept of Coopertition, and the commitment to the FIRST Core Values. The guiding force behind these principles was Dr. Woodie Flowers. Dr. William Murphy, Jr., who was instrumental in creating the concept of FIRST with Dean Kamen, recognized the unique perspective, wisdom, and communication style that Woodie brought to the FIRST Robotics Competition.

In honor of Woodie, Dr. Murphy founded the Woodie Flowers Award in 1996. He recognized that the FIRST ethos would be carried forward by our FIRST mentors and sought to celebrate those mentors who demonstrate the leadership, ethical behavior, and communication skills exemplified by Woodie. Woodie believed “societies get the best of what they celebrate”.

Being recognized by students, through nomination essays, makes this honor very meaningful to mentors. It is truly an honor for a mentor to be nominated for this award.

  • Shelby Anderson from Team 581, The Blazing Bulldogs  

Additional Awards

Congratulations to the Teams and individuals that earned the remaining awards at the Silion Valley Regional! See the list here.