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Fashion&Pageantry Where two worlds combine

January 2018

Hair, Skincare and Makeup FIRST IMPRESSIONS • Wardrobe • Jewelry • Accessories

2017 Today’s International Woman

Shaylett Stuckey

Queen of Queens

Premier Issue

From the Editor


oday’s International Woman is a pageant system designed to empower and teach men, women and children worldwide about self-love and community service. This pageant was started on a dream to create an all-inclusive competition which joins individuals together in service and in faith to “change lives, one crown at a time”. We are proud to be the first all-inclusive pageant to have a division for visible and invisible abilities. Our contestants are not judged on size, but the ability to be a complete package. In the process of creating this pageant system, we have accomplished many great things, including our latest venture--an online magazine. Our online magazine, Fashion & Pageantry, will showcase both the world of modeling and the world of pageantry and will teach others how to step into either or both worlds, as a beginner or a professional. The possibilities are endless. Our Premier Edition will be released in January of 2018 with quarterly publications available online or in print. To subscribe, advertise or contribute please contact us at fashionpageantry@gmail.com. Leave a little sparkle everywhere you go,

Shaylett Stuckey, 2017 Today’s International Woman Queen of Queens............PG 4

Jera Lynn Anders Editor-in-Chief, Fashion & Pageantry Magazine Executive Director, Today’s International Woman

First Impressions...pg 6

Queen Highlights...pg 8

Model Highlights...pg 30


Shaylett E. Stuckey 2017 Today’s International Woman Queen of Queens

Shaylett Long Stuckey is a resident of Van Buren Township, Michigan and has formerly held the titles of Mrs. Classy Michigan 2016 and Mrs. Michigan America 2015. Shaylett was born and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan and attended Kentwood Public Schools and graduated as Senior Class President. Shaylett attended Northern Michigan University and is a graduate of Shorter University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management with a minor in Leadership Studies.

and Morgan (13). After a 155 pound weight loss, she decided that it was time to make “a few” changes! Shaylett is a small to medium business specialist for the Paychex Corporation. Since 2002, she has also owned and operated ModelMom Productions, a multi-faceted company which encompasses her image consulting business “Shine with Shaylett”, as well as being a distributor for Premier Designs High Fashion Jewelry.

As an entrepreneur and motivational Shaylett is married to Jayson Stuckey, speaker, Shaylett involves herself witha home improvement business own- in her community both personally and er, and they will soon celebrate their professionally by working with the 23rd wedding anniversary. Together National Association of Professional they have two daughters; Janay (17) Women, eWomen Network, MI Small 4

Business Assoc. Northridge Church Praise Team and Choir, Keystone Academy PTO President, Toastmasters, and public speaking on personal empowerment. She is dedicated to advocating for women through support of and membership in the Direct Selling Association and the Female Entrepreneur Association. She will be a featured author in an upcoming book titled "Ignite Your Inner Warrior". During her reign as Queen of Queens, Shaylett will be promoting her platform, ‘Empowering Women through Encouraging Entrepreneurship.’ Shaylett has a strong personal connection to this platform as both a work at home mom and entrepreneur. There is a lot of work to be done! Empowerment simply equals options. Shaylett plans to continue working her business through conducting accessory workshops, image consultations, motivational speaking, and sharing the opportunity of hope that Premier Designs provides as a business. The Today’s International Woman pageant, which was held in New Orleans, Louisiana, is more than a pageant. We are women on a mission! We're changing lives one crown at a time, serving God and people with honor and compassion. The competition involves civically engaged women making a difference by being involved in their communities who are excited about giving back. Candidates competed for the coveted title based on overall personality and articulation skills, confidence, achievements, poise and appearance throughout the competition. Queen of Queens is granted to the delegate with the highest total score overall, regardless of division. For information, visit www.todaysinternationalwoman.com. 5

sual. When I say nude, I mean as close to your skin color as possible. This will make your legs look longer and minimize distractions. The color of your nails is the same. Either wear nude polish or simply have your nails buffed. Colored polish and French Tips are very distracting.

First Impressions by Michelle Field

Jewelry, keep it simple You want the judges to focus on your face and what you are saying. Keeping jewelry simple will help that focus. Leave the necklaces and bracelets at home. A simple pair of sparkly button earrings are all the embellishment you need. Dangly earrings will distract as they move. By keeping your jewelry to just the earrings, the judges will be all eyes on you.

Wear a smile In the interview, judgments are being made the second you walk into the room, The best accessory you can wear is a even before you open your mouth. The judges are looking at your posture, your smile. Take a deep breath and let it out smile, your clothing and even your makeup. Do you already look like the title- before you enter. As you step to the holder they want? Here are some tips to make sure you look deserving of the door, put a smile on your face. Make sure your smile is in your eyes and not crown. just your lips. There is nothing worse than a fake smile. The judges will see Understand the Requirements Before you decide what to wear, make sure you understand the requirements of your smile and feel a connection. the system. Are you required to wear a suit or a dress? Are pant suits or jumpsuits allowed? Do they recommend pantyhose? Understanding what is expected Once you have your wardrobe perfect so your first impression is a good one, will go a long way in being prepared. the rest is up to you. Judgments are made in the first few seconds, so make Color matters Next, think about color. Seriously! There are certain colors that express confi- them count. What you wear and how dence and trustworthiness. These colors include: red, blue, purple and black. you look can make all the difference. Some colors are difficult to wear like yellow, orange and green. The one color Make those first seconds count! you should never wear is tan or beige. That color means that you are satisfied and don’t want to win the crown. That’s a message no one wants to convey. Check the fit In some pageant systems, how you look is actually half your score in interview. Baggy or too tight clothing will be distracting and will lower your score. I suggest you purchase your interview outfit one size bigger than your largest part: bust, waist, hips. Wait until about a week or two before the competition, then get everything altered to fit you like a glove. The judges may not realize that your clothing fits, but they will notice a bad fit. Accessories Believe it or not, your nails and shoes play an important role in keeping the judges attention on you. Keep shoes a nude color whether they are a pump or peep toe. I don’t recommend sandals for the interview because they are too ca6

Michelle Field has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Communication, is a former Barbizon instructor and model and has over 30 years of experience as an educator. This allows her clients to work with one coach for both interview skills and stage work. She also has experience as a contestant, judge and emcee. Michelle has helped young women win at the local, state and national levels in a variety of pageant systems. Michelle has been featured in Pageantry Magazine, Pageant Planet and Pageant Cast. Learn more information about coaching with Michelle on her website, michellefieldllc.com.

Mississippi Harvest Queen

Directed by CMT’s Margaret Wood, this late September pageant takes place annually in the small town of Pontotoc but is open statewide and to surrounding states as well. It is an all crown pageant open to girls of all ages. There are 9 age categories and 3 supreme titles up for grabs for the contestants. Each Queen also receives a professional photo shoot with Nationally Published Photographer Joey Brent and professional model Margaret. Olivia Noell Brackin Ultimate Grand Supreme Winner

Photos © Joey Brent

Photos © Joey Brent

Grand Supreme Winner - Katelyn Thompson

Photos © Joey Brent

Back row-Katelyn Thompson, Kallie Harrison, Madison Knox and Brianna Posey. Front row-Lucy Kate Hale, Ali Beth Teem, Avery Grey Robbins, Olivia Brackin, Avery Kate Green, Londyn Allred, Emma Nichols, Anastyn Richards.

By Kimberly Baxter, TIW Lifetime Queen I have been doing hair and makeup for pageant queens, models, cheer and dance squads and brides for over 30 years. One of the things I always tell my clients is, the importance of good skin care. I don’t care how beautiful you are or how great a makeup artist is, if you want to look your best for the pageant stage, photo shoot, for your wedding day, or in general, good skin is a MUST! All of the perfectly applied, expensive makeup in the world can’t cover up poor skin care. The single MOST important thing you can do for your entire body, including your skin, which is the largest organ in our bodies, is to drink plenty of water. Water flushes out toxins and waste

products, which is significant in clearing up your skin. If you do not drink an ample supply of water every day, the toxins and bodily wastes keep accumulating in your body and become trapped under your skin. Proper nutrition also affects our skin. For healthiest looking skin, eat a balanced, healthy diet, avoid greasy and high calorie foods. Also avoid alcoholic beverages. I am 52 years old and am told often that my skin looks younger than 52. I do not drink alcohol at all, I drink plenty of water, try my best to eat healthy, though ice cream and chocolate are weaknesses for me, something I believe helps is fresh air. I try to take a walk outside every day. I feel like the fresh air is benefi-

cial to my skin and my overall general health. I am sure most ladies have been told, several times, the importance of removing all of your makeup every single night before going to bed. I cannot stress enough the importance of removing all makeup every night. Makeup sitting on your skin overnight clogs pores and leaves your skin dull and can cause breakouts. So ladies, wash your makeup off every night, no matter how tired you are. Clean your face every morning and night, exfoliate at least twice a week (depending on your skin type), moisturize morning and night and always, always, ALWAYS use sunscreen! Next month, I will share information on how to determine which skin care products are best for your skin type and skin care concerns. 7

Queen Highlights

uated from the Barbizon Modeling School and has modeled in many bridal and fashion shows abroad. She has competed and won locally, statewide and nationally throughout the USA. She currently holds the state title of Mrs Virginia 2018 TIW.

I won spokesmodel at the state level for my speech on Autism Awareness and I won Miss plus America Miss community service this past summer for all the community service work and volunteerism I do in the autism community. I took something that nearly broke me mentally emotionally and physically and turned it around and use that as the base of my motivation to spread autism awareness.

Tracea Lynne Bolin Mrs Virginia 2018 TIW Throughout her life she has had a drive and passion to excel. As a Veteran of the United States Navy she has served her country well for 4 years in the field of Intelligence. She has graduated from the United States Naval and Marine Intelligence School. She served as a USN Ceremonial Guard in DC and also has worked as a secretary of Naval Bupers at the Pentagon. She is a Veteran of a Foreign War- Desert Storm.

Dina Alsaid Mrs. Texas Plus America 2017 Miss Plus America Miss Community Service 2017

Five years ago my son was diagnosed Tracea is an Advocate for the Arthritis with autism. I still remember the day Foundation and works to raise aware- in May that changed my life and my Christina Castro World’s Miss Mississippi Tourism 2018 ness and funds in fighting for the cure. family’s life forever. She herself battled Rhematoid ArthriMy name is Christina Castro and I tis for the past 8 years and has been a The anxiety, the fear, and the anger-- hold the title of World’s Miss Mississpark of hope for others. She was a ce- all those emotions wrapped up into sippi Tourism 2018. I have used my lebrity hostess at the Virginia 2016 and one. I finally came to the realization title lately by helping out at events in that this was not punishment but that 2017 Walk 2 Cure Arthritis. my town that sponsor a little girl who God had blessed me with a unique is four years old that has a very rare Tracea has been married to Michael child and I was his voice and his adtumor that grows inside her brain. I Bolin for 21 years and has 3 sons… vocate. In March 2016, I had gastric also help out at the humane society by Chandler, Austin and Kyle. This beau- sleeve surgery. I had made it my goal donating toys and food to dogs and ty queen has been in the pageant world to compete in the Texas Plus America cats. My platform is stop animal abuse. since a young girl and holds many var- Pageant system. When they asked what I proudly represent my state with my ious titles! She has judged many pag- my platform would be, of course, I altitle and I will be going to nationals in eants over the years and is an official ready knew Autism Awareness: Early July at Nashville, Tennessee. registered MOA judge. Tracea grad- Childhood Intervention. 8

Fantastic Five Crowned

American Elegance 2017 tion and Evening Wear.

Upon the completion of the evening, five beautiful women were crowned. Ms. American Elegance Woman 2018 - Aftan Wiliams – Georgia (30 – 40 Division), Ms. American Elegance Lady 2018 - Greta Donald Clark - South Carolina (41 & up Division), Ms. American Elegance Sophisticate 2018 - Sonya Petty – Illinois (18 & up and wear a size 16W & up division), Mrs. American Elegance 2018: Emily Leslie - Northern Illinois (25 & up division), and Ms. American Elegance 2018: Makayla Peterson - Midwestern US (20-29 Division). These ladies will spend the next year making personal appearances throughout the country promoting the pageant and their personal platforms.

The American Elegance Pageant officials are proud to announce that five The 20th Anniversary pageant will be held in the new location, Holiday Inn Chidynamic women were crowned on cago-Elk Grove, November 1-4, 2018. More information may be obtained by visNovember 12, 2017 at the Holiday Inn iting the pageant’s website at www.msamericanelegancepageant.com Chicago West-Itasca. The pageant production consisted of competitions in Interview, Personal Expression, Fashion Wear, On-Stage Q&A and Evening Wear. The weekend began with orientation followed by Interview and Personal Expression competition. The contestants had a blast at the pink and purple themed pajama party that Friday evening following competition to help relieve some steam and danced the night away. Saturday morning began with rehearsal and a Pink luncheon attended by the contestants and outgoing Queens to fellowship and build a stronger bond with one another. Saturday evening began pageant competition with prelims where the delegates performed an opening number, competed in Fashion Wear and Optionals of Runway Diva, which is open to anyone to enter, and Spokesmodel competition. Sunday rounded out competition with a morning rehearsal and Finals competition of On-Stage Ques9

Global America Pageant The evolving pageantry world provides pageantry opportunities for everyone. The Global America Pageant continues to adapt and expand as they celebrate their 18th anniversary. The multi-tiered pageant allows all women with the “pageant bug” an opportunity to compete.

mission is to allow titleholders to promote charities close to their heart. Global America and Global U.S. titleholders have the freedom to focus on their platform without mandatory “official” events. Titleholders must complete a minimum of six community service events during their reign.

Global America has exciting new opportunities in 2018. One change is in the Princess program which is open to girls 18 and under. The traditional pre-teen/ teen division was eliminated in 2012. A mentorship program replaced the traditional on-stage pageant. The pageant was modified from a competition to an apprenticeship to allow younger girls to perfect their polished pageant look and to develop a solid platform portfolio before competing in on-stage pageants. A Princess is mentored by a reigning Global America Queen. In the past, Global America Princess titleholders had to be recommended and sponsored by Global America or Global U.S. Queens. The mentor was responsible for ensuring the Global America Pageant’s primary Princess completed community service. In 2018, Global America Princess titleholders can be sponsored by ANY title holder in ANY system! This will allow more mother/daughter, aunt/niece and sisters to reign together. This change was a popular request, as many Mrs. systems do not offer opportunities for younger girls. New titles and trends have always been a tradition with The Global America Pageant system. A little pageant history, the Global U.S. “online” pageant was launched back in 2001. Due to the popularity it evolved into an onstage pageant as part of the traditional Global America Pageant.

The Global Role model program will launch in late 2018 for girls and women who are not able to compete in traditional pageants. Many wonderful women are excluded from pageantry due to travel restrictions from being stationed overseas, health restrictions (for example can not fly due to pregnancy), or financially not able to compete but still want to showcase their community service work. The Global Role model program is not a traditional pageant but an online expo for women who want to showcase community events. The website will be a photo gallery of community service events. A limited number of submissions will be featured each quarter. The 2017-2018 Global America titleholders will reign until Fall 2018. The 2018 pageant location will be announced in the near future. Please visit www.globalamericapageant.com for more information about The Global America Pageant. 10

Queen Highlights

Kristina Green American Beauties Plus Elite 2017 Alleya Saint World’s Teen Miss Georgia Mikell Reed Carroll World’s Mrs. Tourism As World’s Mrs. Tourism 2018, Mikell Reed Carroll is not only promoting tourism around the world, she is also working hard on her platform to wipe out heart disease in women! Mikell has been a volunteer and Official Ambassador with the American Heart Association (AHA) since 2012 and was featured in the February issue of Better Homes and Gardens magazine discussing her heart health wake up call. Earlier this year Mikell received the President’s Volunteer Service Award medal for her volunteer efforts with the AHA. In her time as World’s Mrs. Tourism she has been able to reach more than 500,000 people worldwide with a message that simple lifestyle changes can have big heart health results and hopes to top 1 million by the end of her reign.

I am a survivor of bullying. I have been bullied since the age of 12 and because of that I developed a psychological condition known as conversion. Conversion is where the body takes stress and anxiety and converts it into a physical symptom. I have suffered seizures that have resulted in my mom having to give me CPR, or a rapid heart rate that has caused me to pass out walking across the floor. I missed almost the entire last month of school this past school year due to seizures. Since becoming World’s Teen Miss Georgia tourism, I have developed a voice and the ability to stand up to bullies for myself and for others. I have only had one seizure in the last 4 months. I am learning to conquer my fear of people and public speaking through the interviews I’m doing for Hollywood Connections and through pageants and I’m learning to see myself through the eyes of my family and friends.

Kristina is the 12th woman to win the prestigious title of American Beauties Plus Elite. No stranger to the pageant world, she has participated in many facets: as a pageant judge, coordinator, emcee, and contestant. Her pageant history includes participation, awards, and titles earned in various local, state and national pageants. Kristina believes strongly in the healthy arena of pageant competition and encourages others to follow their dreams! An active volunteer for many years, Kristina believes in the importance of giving back and making a difference in the world around her. Through her platform, Volunteering Across America, she promotes volunteerism and gets people involved in their communities. Through many of life’s challenges that she herself has experienced, she has found great comfort in cooking for the families at the Ronald McDonald House; her love of animals has parlayed her into being an activist for animal rights and safety, and her dedication to the children of the Pajama Program and Project Linus helps keep her young. 11

My Today’s International Woman Story

By Sharon Diederich

When I began in Today’s International Woman Pageant I was the marketing director, helping create a market for the pageant contestants and helping raise funds for the American Heart Association. I had never been involved with any type of pageant system before, I knew absolutely nothing about it and honestly, I had no desire to know much about it. I loved the causes that everyone was bringing to the event as their personal platform and all I really knew was, they were having a great time. I was asked by many of the contestants why I did not join the pageant, most got the same answer, I am not a girly girl. As I watched that night, I saw not only a wide array of women, all shapes, sizes, backgrounds and abilities competing for the crown, but I also heard, testimony and advocacy of things I knew nothing about until then. I have been personally working with the homeless for 33 years, I call my foundation The Outreach Home Party Divas. I found that people in small businesses have the largest hearts and voices and because of that, we join together to bring awareness and funding to things that do not always get awareness and funding. My personal platform of helping the broken, homeless and addicted has had a huge roll in my life and when I joined as a contestant in Today’s American Woman Pageant now known as Today’s International Woman Pageant, I honestly did not think I had a shot at winning anything other than the presidential volunteer award because of the average 70 hours a week I spend missioning and providing resources to those who need it the most. In 2015 I joined the pageant. I had to actually purchase dresses as I only owned one dress. I called it the wedding, funeral, fancy dinner dress and yes there was only one. I decided to join and compete where I felt strong and joined the competition of National Spokesmodel. I was actually quite nervous because no matter how many times, I wrote, rewrote and practiced my speech, when I finally had my place on the stage, I threw the speech on the table and spoke from my heart and experiences. As I went to sit back down in my place after I had shared my life with 40 women and 5 judges I reminisced in my mind of how many of the women had incredible knowledge and worthy platforms then it happened, they called my name. I was stunned, humbled and honestly could not believe that I had won the title. The next year serving my reign as the national spokesmodel, the doors that God had placed before me opened like never before. I met many people that wanted to work with me, wanted me to come and represent their events and efforts in my community and beyond. My ministry was becoming a place where people wanted my expertise and abilities to assist them. I have been able to connect with large organizations who are teaching me and providing me with the resources that before I could only wish for. This year I have been accredited and accomplished more in this ministry than I did in the 31 years before I became a titled queen with Todays International Woman. Today’s International Woman, being a biblically based pageant, has allowed me to grow in faith, in self-esteem, and my accomplishments have been acknowledged in many levels not just through TIW but also in the communi12

ties where I serve doing mission work helping families and individuals. The resourse list has become very long and now, what seemed to be an act of congress to achieve, is now only a phone call away. I never thought in a million years that being a part of a pageant could change not only the missions that I have been working on for so long, but also help me grow in faith, help me to grow in a positive and productive way in my ministry but also to develop lifetime relationships with likeminded people who are all on Gods mission as vessels of his work. I am proud to hold a lifetime title with Today’s International Woman Pageant and until the day I am able to lay my crown at the feet of Jesus, I will continue to be a part of this wonderful organization that has brought so much into my life. I am blessed beyond measure to be able to serve in far more productive ways as Gods Vessel through the people I have met, the places I have been and through the dedication, commitment, and support I have received through Todays International Woman. I look forward to many more years of serving as a Lifetime Queen with TIW. You never know where God is going to place you, I am honored that he placed me with TIW and with an amazing, loving TIW family.

Queen Highlights

Autumn Kinkade Today’s International Woman Elegant Teen My name is Autumn Kinkade and I am 17 yrs old. I live in Adair, Ok. I was born 3 months early weighing 1 lb. 12 oz. I have cerebral palsy and use a walker. I started competing in pageants a few years ago and since then, I have won several state and national titles and currently represent Today’s International Women as Elegant Teen.

100 models of summer, A’La Mode, Omega, Polyanna--Back Cover, Sassy Couture, Le’Bloom, Fearless Model, Enchanting Model--Back cover, Art & Beauty, Teen Fashion, Moonstruck-Front cover, Supermodels Unlimited--Front cover, American Model, and Teen Fashion) and am currently featured in Seventeen Magazine Sept/Oct edition (I was able to go to Seventeen magazine while in New York)! Last month I flew to Colorado Springs because one of the judges from TIW nominated me for Extraordinary Person of The Year. I have also been named one of Fearless Models Magazines Ambassadors and will be a VIP for Supermodels Unlimited for 2018. After this school year started, I had to switch to home schooling in order to continue to work on my modeling career. I want to be an inspiration to others and let them know that despite what you are going thru, do not give up on your dreams. I never thought in a million years I, a girl from a small town with a disability would be living this dream. I also do motivational speaking and would love to reach a larger audience in order to get my message out. Changing the world one ability at a time.

In March, I was contacted by Victoria Henley who was on America’s Next Top Model. Victoria had contacted Jera Lynn the director of TIW asking if she could work with some of her pageant queens. In April, I began modeling with Victoria and have been in runway shows and done photoshoots from NYTFW, Florida, Colorado, HolTenille Choi lywood (with Snoop Dog and numerous other celebrities) and more. My name is Tenille Choi. I’m 39 years old and live in Mckinleyville, CA. I’m I have also earned the Presiden- a beauty queen with 67 titles under my tial Volunteer Service award. I have belt. I use my titles to educate people since been in 20+ fashion magazines on Autism. My son is 9 years old and (Seventeen, Beyond the Moon - Top has Autism. I knew nothing about it


before he was born. He was diagnosed at 5 years old, and I have spent the last 4 years getting educated, getting involved and educating others. I am an advocate for my son. But, like me prior to him being born, most people know very little about Autism. So, I dress up as a princess and go to local schools and read books to the kids about Autism, and acceptance of others that are different. The kids love it. I volunteer for a whole host of other things in my community, from The Salvation Army, to the Cub Scouts. The more I interact with people, the more I can educate people and I love it! It’s a win-win.

Cynthia Griner Mrs. Elite American Dream 2017 This past June Cynthia was crowned Mrs. Elite American Dream 2017. Her platform is raising awareness of fertility, and funds to assist another couple as well as inspiring and encouraging women of all ages to follow their dreams. Her daughter Hope was born through a 3 year infertility journey and IVF of an egg donor on August 19th, 2015. Cynthia enjoys sea therapy, putting her toes in the sand and reflecting on her life blessings. No DREAM is too big or too small.

This Isn’t Your Mama’s Pageant

Real American Pageants by Dee Chartier, Director We have all seen that TLC show, or heard about it. You know the one with the mini, spray-tanned adult looking tots, the way over priced clothes and over-the-top theatrics that make for train-wreck programing. The world of Jon Bonet Ramsey and the thousands of dollars spent on what it takes to win a 5 foot-tall trophy, a crown you cannot wear in public, and a reputation for throwing temper tantrums of Honey Boo Boo proportions. Then, there is the flip side the likes of Miss America, Miss USA, and Miss Universe where the contestants are perfectly poised, polished, and height/weight proportional. Streamed from the glam towers of Vegas, every little girl who is not perfect wishes they looked like the perfection on the stage.

and the scandal of a role model who happens to be human, too. Jealousy is real and the struggle to keep up a good reputation is a struggle most don’t care enough about to attempt to keep it clean.

Those with family friendly tattoos are not turned away and those “of a certain age” are greeted with cheers from contestants and staff alike, since there are no age requirements adopted by most other systems. People from all walks of life compete side by side, the only “There’s a good side to pageants?” you thing separating them is what they ask. Yes, indeed, there is. There are ex- bring to the table, not what they wear. cellent systems out there who guide young ladies in the art of poise, good Independent film producers, casting sportsmanship, and public speaking. agents, models, and sound professionEach one comes with a modicum of als volunteer their time as judges and rules for decorum, such as how one mentors to help contestants succeed conducts themselves in public, social in an ever-fickle world that is the Enmedia, how to cope with social anxi- tertainment Industry. These judges are ety, and to be an ambassador for vari- looking for people they can cast for ous charities. Even with these positive projects either in print, film, web, and aspects, there are some crucial things music. missing due to being outdated with the demands of society. Real American Pageants offers a plethIf what I have written resembles your ora of skills that can be used in any opinion of pageants, or what your ex- Real American Pageants aims to turn form of employment. Mandatory comperience with them has been, it should. pageantry upside down, one pageant munity service is definitely a resume However, there is a plus side few speak at a time, by accepting the things that booster and often results in higher pay of, as if it were an unwritten rule: Thou make people unique and not segre- or better college scholarships. After all, Shalt Not Speak of Pageant Positives. gating individuals who do not fit the who doesn’t like people who volunteer There seems to be a backlash of back mold of typical “beauty queen” stereo- their time helping those in need, be it biting and looking for the queen to types. Contestants are encouraged to animal or human, a little charity goes fall. The bad seems to always take pre- be themselves, right down to the col- a long way to break the stereotypes of cedence over the good. The trash talk ored hair, tattoos and Birkenstocks! today’s society!

Mariah Hicks National Teen Miss

Emma Lawrence National Jr Teen Miss

Jaesyn Christopherson National Mini Mr 15

Queen Highlights

cover model search for Supermodels magazine. Featured in World Class Beauty Queens article May 2017, and won the Mariam J. Wood Journalism Scholarship.

Kevi L. Berger Mrs. Montana US Continental 2017

Jennifer Wakefield Mrs. Central Maryland Unites States 2018

Society often dictates – or at least highly influences – our perception of ourselves. This is true not just for young women, but members of our community in general. I grew up as a “victim” of physical, mental and sexual abuse, the child of a broken home and in foster care. I always knew that I was not pretty enough, skinny enough, good enough.

Jennifer is a 5 year breast cancer survivor, a 16 year wife to Scott, a mother of two teenage girls, Lexi and Natasha, a career woman for a world wide non-profit, and a volunteer who gives At age 40, I was crowned with my state love, support and encouragement to title for my very first pageant. How I got involved with pageantry is a long those going thru breast cancer now. story, but needless to say, this changed Through Jennifer’s work with For 3 my outlook on life. I learned that we Sisters, a charity that supports those are each beautiful, rare and special in going through breast cancer and The our own way. I have learned that I am American Cancer Society’s Reach to good enough and that is why each day Recovery program that coaches those I promote and “Be the Best Me I Can that are on their journey through the Be.” It’s not just a platform, it’s a way of treatment of breast cancer, she hopes thinking and a belief in myself. they will feel loved and encouraged. MARISSA KARMIN Jennifer’s other accomplishments in- Miss Next Level Youth clude: 1st runner up and Mrs. Photo- I am Marissa Karmin, Miss Next Levgenic at Mrs. Maryland Internation- el Youth; Daughter of the Year and al 2017. Semi-finalist in Seventeen my platform is Anti-Bullying/ Mental Magazine and JcPenney’s cover model Health Awareness. Throughout my search. Top 10 finalist out of 500 in the years of public school, I had always 18

been a target of bullying; both emotionally and physically. Due to my unfortunate situation, I have developed anxiety as well as depression, which has had a negative toll on my mental health. At this stage of my life, I have learned how to cope with my anxiety and depression, but it does not mean that there are people who understand what I may be going through. There are many who categorize mental illness in a negative way and think emotions can easily be put aside. My platform shows people that anyone (whether they be a victim of bullying/harassment or other circumstances) can fall prey to mental illness and the importance of getting help.

Queen Highlights

crowned on October 14, 2017. When my name was called that night, it felt like my world stood still and all those months of hard work paid off preparing for that one big night. My platform is Self-Awareness combined with love the skin you’re in. With my platform I enjoy teaching young girls and women about validation--how important it is for ladies to know how beautiful and smart they are and they can conquer anything in this world if they put their mind to it--including becoming a national titleholder. I believe we all should dream big and see where our dreams take us. God Bless!

nizing fundraisers such as the Type 1 Diabetes Awareness Fall Celebration to raise scholarship funds to send kids to Camp Hodia, an outdoor adventure program for kids with T1D. Camp Hodia helps empower kids with T1D by providing an opportunity to form lifelong friendships as evidenced by one camper’s words, “At home no one includes me in activities because I’m different. At Camp Hodia, I get to do all the activities because, here, I’m the same!” By bringing awareness to Type 1 diabetes, Stephanie hopes to change the way kids with T1D are treated by their peers.

Emily Grace McLaughlin Miss Next Level New Jersey PreTeen At just 11 years old she has already been an overcomer in life. After surviving a Stage 4 cancer diagnosis at 3 she adopted a sweet Chiweenie Dog as her emotional support pet. She has always been an animal lover and as an only child her dog Elinor became not only a pet, but a best friend. Now Emily is dedicated to raising awareness on animal abuse and the benefits of pet ownership. She says, “Animals can’t speak for themselves so we have to speak for them.”

Laura Karmin Miss Next Level Youth Mother of the Year As a survivor of domestic violence and uterine cancer, I live my life by the immortal words of Gloria Gaynor “I will survive”. I am proud to say I am a leader in the business community. Stephanie Schoenfeld Global America’s 2018 Mrs. Global U.S.

Sierra Carey Miss American Beauties Plus 2017 Thank you for taking the time out to read about my journey so far on winning my current title. I am Miss American Beauties Plus 2017. I was 20

Stephanie Schoenfeld, Global America’s 2018 Mrs. Global U.S., of Boise, Idaho is fighting bullying by taking anti-bullying programs into schools throughout Idaho. The Bully Project was designed to give school staff, students, and parents the tools to successfully combat bullying (www.thebullyproject.com). Stephanie is also making a difference in the lives of kids by orga-

As the owner of Ultimate Fashions Boutique in Woodbridge, I am passionate about empowering women of all ages to look and feel their best inside and out. GEORGIA THOMAS Little Miss Regency International 2017 Hi! My name is Georgia Thomas and I’m from Cedar Hill, Texas. I’ve been competing in beauty pageants for over two years now and my titles include Little Miss Texas for Regency Interna-

Queen Highlights quotes and something that I practice daily “Create Leaders, Not Followers” and I always empower others to take that quote and run with it.

Crystal Gail Hyder tional 2017 and my most recent title, Ms. America V Intl SC/Germany being Little Miss Regency Interna- SC Imperial Pageantry Spokesmodel tional, 2017. Being awarded the Inter- I am 36 years old and the mother of national crown this past summer was an amazing 5 year old little boy. I curone of the greatest accomplishments of rently work for Bon Secours Hospital my life. It was truly an amazing pag- Medical Group in Greenville, SC as an eant weekend and trip for me and my office manager. I manage three primafamily. ry care offices. I also teach phone etiquette classes for our medical group as My life hasn’t always been glitter and well as leadership. I am currently mencrowns. I was born to drug-addicted toring 5 young ladies to someday go parents and was immediately placed into a leadership position within our into the foster care system in Okla- medical group. I am very involved in homa. After being in several different our community and with volunteering. foster homes, I found my forever fam- I also sit as a co-chair for our Emerging ily. At age 3, my parents were able to Leaders Community Service Commitofficially adopt me. We moved to Texas tee. Giving and helping is my passion. when I was five years old. God blessed me with the heart to give and the heart to share my knowledge Since being crowned as the interna- and skills with others. I am very proud tional titleholder in Las Vegas, I have to say that I am also teaching my son been afforded many great opportuni- those things as well. I have recently ties. In October 2017, I was presented taken the title of Ms. America V Intl to the City of Cedar Hill at our local SC/Germany and I also hold the title as city council meeting. Four days later a SC Imperial Pageantry Spokesmodel I was able to ride in our local parade. Ambassador. I am very proud of my Currently, with the help of city council accomplishments and look forward to members, family, and friends, I’m pro- seeing what my future holds. I plan to viding Christmas gifts for 70-80 local continue doing God’s work, leading foster children. and guiding young ladies of all ages, setting an example for those around My mission is to provide hope when me, and being the best possible version life seems hopeless. of myself I can be. One of my favorite

robin casella Modern Miss American Royalty USA 2017

shannon thweatt Today’s International Woman Curvy Miss


Winning Your Competition Through Platform and Interview


1) Be yourself and be unique. Many contestants attempt to look at last year’s winners to prepare THIS year’s strategies. As a coach, I always recommend taking a look at a system’s past videos, photos and winners. It’s important to see gown choices, fun fashion and fitness wear choices so you do not completely “wing your competition” but remember a new year brings NEW JUDGES, a new feel, and sometimes even the National Director has met with her board and is taking his or her system in a new direction. If you have any questions, I would email the National Director or call the National Office yourself on questions regarding talent, fitness wear, gown, etc. Certain pageants have a certain feel. You do need to be unique to stand out but if 22

you are completely out of range in your wardrobe choices that can also send the wrong message. For example, you cannot come into a pageant such as the Rose Queen Competition in Pasadena steeped in 100 years of tradition when the first interview is literally 60 seconds and one question—not prepared enough to know that you’d better have a GREAT answer—as you have one shot in the first round to make an impression AND you’d better be dressed appropriately for the queens this 100 year old traditional organization typically chooses. One misstep in ultra revealing clothing or a poor answer could knock you out of the running when there are 900 women going for 7 spots and they are choosing people to go to the next round in 60 short seconds! This is a hard feat and why many women need a coach in pageantry. You want to stand out with what is unique about your story, yet you still want to send the message that you can still be a great fit for that particular system.

2) Know your platform. Platforms are big in many systems, so make sure you know yours like the back of your hand. Since I am a Platform and Interviewing Coach, I can tell you that a strong platform can win a pageant. Know the statistics behind your chosen issue, whether its adoption or bullying or education. If your platform is a local organization, make a plan of how you, if chosen as a National Titleholder, could and would take it to a larger national scale. It often helps to contact the organization and tell them you are running for a larger title and ask how you can partner with them to take it nationally, if you win. (It also doesn’t hurt to let the judges know that the organization is “on board” with you). You can often dress in or wear a pin into your interview reflecting a portion of the colors of your platform. The more interactive you can be with the judges regarding your platform the better! You can start your interview

with three important facts about your platform and end your interview with those facts. It wraps it up and also shows your commitment toward your topic. Also, whether you are a city or state titleholder, make sure to let the judges know what you have already done or propose to do with your chosen platform. Finally, platforms can be fun! Not every platform is a sad story. Many judges love to see how a bad situation was turned into a good one through your platform. Don’t make the entire interview about the sad aspects of your chosen platform as in the end; folks want to feel positive in your space—at least by the end of the interview! So, have answers, solutions, and feel good stories to also tell about your chosen platform.

3) Be a good speaker. I always recommend contestants to join a local Toastmasters! I have a degree in Public Address and was public speaking for quite some time before joining a local Toastmasters organization. I wish I had done so sooner! Toastmasters is an amazing organization to learn leadership skills and speaking both prepared speeches but also coming up and speaking for 2 minutes on a specialized topic. This organization works with the terrified speaker to the most accomplished speaker. It is a supportive place to learn and grow as a speaker. Work on attending more than one local meeting until you find where you are most comfortable! I learned so much about the uses of “like” in every sentence and “umm” every time a word doesn’t come to mind. Unfortunately, when an in-

dividual says “like” 2-3 times per sentence, it becomes impossible to hear the rest of what they are attempting to convey! In current social settings, this is common. In addition, contestants and job applicants may be using their hands in strange ways (along with other unconscious movements) when speaking at the podium, job presentations and even during seated interviews! Some Toastmasters clubs will film your speeches and this is wonderful when preparing for pageant interviews. Toastmasters is affordable and with weekly meetings almost anywhere in the United States—I highly recommend at least 6 months or a year of membership before a state or local pageant to help contestants get prepared for interviews, dealing with the press and other speaking opportunities that are inevitable when holding a crown.

we maximize on those opportunities!

4) Have an accurately-typed spell-checked application. Imagine your horror to look over your paperwork after it has been sent in and realize you have spelling issues or grammatical mistakes on your pageant paperwork. A sloppy, hand-written application or one typed with typos will already send a message you do not care and are not professional for the job. Think of your application as a job resume going to HR. You have to get past Human Resources to get anywhere else for that second interview! Remember your paperwork is your first line of communication to the judges and the pageant system as a whole. Make sure it is compelling, riveting, and pristine. This, as well as your opening statement to judges, is what I specialize in as a coach. You actually can direct much of how the interview will go based on how you write your application and some of your opening statements to your judges panel.

Media Training is also imperative. Media outlets allow 2-3 minutes for a feel good story about a platform or pageant winner. You must be able to articulate your platform and your personal vision within 60-70 seconds! Women who run on in the pageant interview with the media get cut off midsentence or, worse yet, may not even make the news! If you can articulate your drive and passion in a concise one-minute sound bite without rambling—you greatly increase your chances of being quoted and on the news. Marlena Martin is a Again, at Platform Specialists, we Platform and Interhelp with all of this. Being a titleview Coach, Former MAO Preliminary holder is a big business—especialDirector and curly when you are attempting to start rent Director of Teen an organization or become a noted Achieve and Woman expert long after the crown is off. of Achievement. For Getting onto any news source is a more info contact her at martinent1@ huge boost for your personal name gmail.com or info@womanofachievement. or brand. We need to make sure com.


for fitness and world travel!

Queen Highlights

Photographer: Shannon Harp, Hair: Lucia’s Magic Touch, Makeup Artist: Karen Jones, Cosmetics: Senegence/ Lipsense Foundation and Color by Laurel Chiaramonte

Ragan Madison Brosig International World’s Jr. Miss Tourism 2018

Victoria Stoner Today’s International Woman Classy Ms.

My journey began in 2016 with the title of Jr. Miss Arkansas Tourism, with this title I was able to promote my community and the wonderful town I live in. In the summer of 2017 I traveled with my family to Tennessee for the International World’s Tourism Pageant. At this pageant I had the privilege to compete with young ladies my age from all over the world. At the end of an amazing weekend of competition, I was crowned the new 2018 International Jr. Miss Tourism. Here is where my real journey begins. With my international title I was named the tiniest spokesperson for “A Gift of The Heart.” This novel is a story of two friends from different ends of the world that cancer touches their lives very tragically. The novel will be produced into a movie in spring 2018. My platform is helping families of cancer patients. Everyone knows someone that has been touched by cancer and can tell you what a financial strain it is on everyone involved. Families lose their jobs, homes, and much more. What happens when that person is better or wants to come home to die, what will they have to come home to? I am bringing awareness.

Victoria is a lady of MANY hats, and not your “average” woman! This beauty is an ordained minister and elder in her faith. She is a domestic assault, child sexual molestation, and rape survivor. Because she has triumphed over so much, she has given her life to Victim’s Advocacy (in many forms), mentorship, public speaking, philanthropy, humanitarianism, and counseling in ministry. Because Victoria desires that all come out of trauma to true healing, harmony, and peace, she will soon pursue a PhD in Marriage and Family Counseling.


Victoria is a full-time entrepreneur and owner/president of a medical oncology consulting and staffing firm, based in Colorado Springs, CO for the last 18 Years. Victoria is also a current 2-title holder with the TIW pageant system as “International Classy Ms.,” and the state title holder of “Classy Ms. Colorado.” Victoria is the mother to an amazing young woman; and aside from her successful and flourishing career in medicine, Victoria is passionate about her faith, family, close friends, and her love

Ayanna Jackson American Beauties Plus Woman 2017 Born and raised in Rochester, N.Y., is where the current reigning American Beauties Plus Woman 2017 hails from. Breast Cancer Awareness and Education is my platform as my friend’s mother died from metastatic breast cancer. I’m also on the Advocacy Committee of the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester. Having the crown is a plus, the title is a plus, my platform is near and dear to me so with or without this title and crown, I will ALWAYS represent/advocate for breast cancer. Never do anything for the glory do it for the love and pride it brings you and all other blessings will fall into place. I love being a voluptuous pageant queen, I am loving the skin I’m in. I enjoy showing voluptuous women that we have valor, substance, beauty and stature.

Queen Highlights

Madelyn Hays Miss Stars and Stripes Outstanding Teen 2018 My platform, Living Heart Healthy, is very dear to me. On May 30, 2015, my Dad passed away from an acute myocardial infraction, otherwise known as a fatal heart attack. My father was a man who enjoyed all the things in life that are not heart healthy. If my father went for a “bike ride”, you could be certain it was on his Harley and not a bicycle. It’s only been a little over two years and it hasn’t gotten easier with time. Heart health does not just affect that one person but it affects their family and friends as well. That’s why it is so important to raise awareness on how to live heart healthy. I would like to help others so that they don’t have to lose a loved one so suddenly and not to mention, at a young age.

Queens Title for Today’s International Woman. Joining Today’s International Woman is the best decision of my life. It has been such an amazing Journey and is not over yet I have met so many amazing people and worked with 50 different organizations and built lasting Photo © P.G. Photography. long friendships. I am so thankful for each new experience I have from the Darla Allgood Todays International Pageant to modToday’s International Woman Ambassador eling on the runway with Magnifique Darla Allgood lives in the beautiful Runway show and being showcased in mountain town of Palmer Lake with magazines. I thank God for using my her husband Randy they have been talents and experiences serving othmarried for 35 years with 5 sons and 3 ers. My title has opened so many doors grandsons. and opportunities and I have been able to use my platform to share my story Darla Allgood was the Colorado state across the United States. My platform queen for Mrs. Elite in 2015 where she is Saving the Storks through Adoption. won her National title in 2016 in the Bahamas. During her reign as National Darla’s story is in When God Winks Queen she was awarded the Queen of at You by well known author Rushnell

Squire. Her other accomplishments include: Ambassador for Save the Storks, Ambassador for Sockittoemsockcampaign socks for Homeless, Elite assistant Pageant Director for Come On In Inc., Winner of Peoples Choice Award 2017 for Super Models Unlimited, Winner Extraordinary 2017 Peoples Award for Community Service Leader, Featured in Super Models Unlimited 2017, Featured in Beauty Queen Magazine 2017, 3 page spread in Omega Fashion Magazine with Layonna Hurley, Featured in Most Influential People Magazine, Featured in Fitness Fashion Magazine.

Today’s International Woman Pageant

www.todaysinternationalwoman.com 25

Posing The Crown:

The Beauty of Pageantry and Modeling

different beast. Judges as well as coaches informed me I had a scowl. Well what they were calling a scowl was my fierce face in modeling. While I am being honest let me continue to say that both modeling and pageantry require coaching and training. You probably won’t walk down the runway in a full out grin. Same holds true for not sporting the fierce face in a pageant. Know that in modeling you are selling the buyers and in pageantry you are selling the judges. Either way you are selling beauty and ability to woo. Both require you to have image and personality. Beauty internal as well as external beauty is needed in both pageantry and modeling. You have to possess confidence along with a positive mental attitude to compete in a pageant. The same rings true for walking the runway. Let’s talk walking! In modeling, a strong strut is paramount to success of a modeling career, just as a graceful walk is necessary to secure the crown. Pageantry requires a more structured, graceful and calm walk. I

by Omega ‘Auntie’ Mothersill Lights! Camera! Action! Alright everyone its showtime! These words work for both modeling and pageantry. Imagine the feeling of hitting the runway in the latest hot new designer’ dress. What about preparing to grace the stage in your beautiful pageant gown. Either is a great feeling of joy. I enjoy being a plus size model as well as a pageant queen. Granted, I may have done things a little backwards. Normally, you enter a pageant and after winning the crown, fashion runway or fun fashion, you get model fever. Some pageants also help their winning delegates to get modeling gigs. However, I was a well-established Plus Model prior to entering my first pageant. I was not only modeling nationally, I coached others in modeling through my Plus Modeling Company. Now, I must be honest, pageantry is a 26

call it perfection in motion. Modeling requires energy, steadiness and self-assurance. I call this devotion to the motion. For pageantry and modeling you need to prefect a strong walk. It is easy to become a diva both in pageantry and modeling. Rein in your inner diva and make being pleasant, kind and comfortable with other beautiful women in the room your mission. You will find beautiful women in both pageantry and modeling. Take it from me when you have bold confidence, you can see a beautiful women smile, compliment her and still think I’m the baddest chick in the room. You must believe this about yourself in order to effectively compete in a pageant or to fiercely rock a runway. I sincerely believe modeling and pageantry go hand in hand. I could not honestly choose one over the other. Modeling and pageantry has played a role in shaping the woman I am today. I enjoy posing my crown. I enjoy modeling and pageantry. Whether you are t-standing or posing at the end a runway, remember to own it! If you find yourself rocking the latest fashion in a runway show or doing a full circle turn in a beautiful evening gown, do it knowing you are courageous and beautiful, a model and a queen. Stay beautiful!

Miss North Mississippi United States Pageant

The very first preliminary pageant to the Mississippi United States national advancing pageant was held this weekend in Ripley, Mississippi. Ripley’s Historic Dixie Theatre welcomed girls from across the northern part of the state to a competition consisting of private interview, fitness, evening gown, and on stage questions. Each girl was scored at 25% per category and the crowned winners will advance on to the state pageant March 2-4 of 2018 at the Gertrude C Ford Center in Oxford, Mississippi. Joey Brent, a photographer out of Oxford, Mississippi is the official photographer for North Mississippi United States. He offered each contestant the best shots possible and was wonderful to work with. Kaylee Parks out of New Albany, Mississippi is the preliminary director. Molly Lewellen of Ripley, Mississippi is the State Director.

Photo Š Joey Brent

Pictured: Tracy Faith Carter, Summer Sharplin and Katelyn Thompson

Little Miss: Adelaide Reed, Miss Pre-teen: Sara Martin, Teen: Katelyn Thompson, Miss: Summer Sharplin, Mrs.: Tracy Faith Carter

ber/close friend have personally been affected by an issue or perhaps your commitment is the result of an impactful experience you had. If it’s an existing organization-Why did you choose this organization over others that do similar work? How have you been personally involved? If it’s an organization/movement you are starting (think motivational speaking, etc)-What inspired you? Why are you uniquely poised to do this work?

How to Ace Your Next Interview and Onstage Question

In every scenario, don’t forget to consider how your work with your platform would enhance the brand of the pageant system and title as well as what you could accomplish on this platform with the title.

by Jackie Schiffer

An interview with the judges and answering an onstage question in front of a full house is arguably enough to make any pageant contestant nervous! Check out these tips from Commit to the Crown Coaching Founder Jackie Schiffer to ace your next interview and onstage question! Pre-Pageant Nothing beats quality preparation in the interview room. When it comes to answering the tough questions, no amount of rehearsal or last minute crunching As Miss Champaign-Urbana 2011 and will make up for work you haven’t done. Here’s your pre-pageant checklist: Miss New York City Tourism 2015, I advocated for hunger awareness chamVolunteerism/Titleholder Involvement As a titleholder, you are uniquely poised to make a tremendous impact. Every pioning the work of Feeding America, titleholder’s reign will eventually come to an end—so make the most of your No Kid Hungry and local groups that reign! Set an appearance goal and commit to it. The pageant community is a I felt were doing outstanding work in great place to get to know other like-minded young women and be involved in the fight against hunger. My involveyour local community. These experiences will help you to more fully understand ment was the result of a volunteer exthe community you’re serving as a titleholder and to speak from a more authen- perience I had as a child working in a local food pantry. Your commitment tic place given your personal experiences. to your platform should be sincere As a judge, it is important to see not only a polished contestant but a titleholder and lasting—don’t just choose an issue who will take advantage of all the appearance opportunities the system affords that’s a hot topic. Your platform should and take the initiative to book her be something you have experience with and are actively pursuing; use this own performances. as an opportunity to develop something you’re truly passionate about. Platform Development Choose a social cause or charitable organization that you are passionate With a platform, the work begins and about. What made you choose this ends without a tiara—I’m still involved cause? Perhaps you or a family mem- with hunger related issues even though 28

I have retired from competing.

yourself. Take a moment to visualize a successful interview/onstage question. Paperwork review Have a copy of your paperwork with you. Take time to highlight what naturally falls in line of your eye. Slowly read through everything you have written and prepare yourself for what questions you may be asked.

Listening Make sure you have heard the quesPaperwork Take time to fill out your paperwork tion! Take the time to listen not only to and don’t leave it until the last minute! the question but also the tone. Avoid This means carefully considering what repeating the question but DO mirror you’re listing and the order you’re list- the language. Then take a breathe and ing things. Are you using active lan- answer your question. guage? Does your paperwork elicit Example: Should a titleholder be held thoughtful questions from those who accountable to her private social media? don’t already know you? Average answer: I believe a titleholder As a coach, I find that the smallest should be held accountable to her pritweaks to paperwork can greatly influvate social media because... ence the questions judges ask you. A final note KNOW your paperwork. As an experienced judge, it is always shocking when a contestant doesn’t seem to know her paperwork. If something has changed since you submitted your paperwork, that’s ok! Be prepared to address what’s changed whether it be a job or a personal interest.

Stronger answer: A titleholder is a leader and a role model, her social media channels whether public or private are representative of her character. The second answer builds off “accountable” as a power word referencing why accountability is important instead of parroting a response by repeating the exact language of the question.

Public Speaking Skills Take time to develop your public speaking skills. Whether it is working with a coach, or enrolling in an improv or public speaking course such as Toastmasters International, there are many options to hone your public speaking and communications skills. During the Pageant It’s pageant day! These are my tips and tricks to ace your interview: Focus Put the phone away! Clear your mind of distractions and find a place where you can quietly and calmly collect

Post pageant Honing your interview and communications skills will lead you far beyond the pageant stage. The communication

skills I developed through pageantry helped me land a national commercial campaign, a spokesmodel job for BMW, and roles Off-Broadway and on television. The organizational skills I developed through involvement with my platform led me to pursue a career in nonprofit management. I would have never guessed when I first competed a decade ago that I would go on to found Commit to the Crown Coaching. Where will your interview and communication skills take you? Whether it’s acing your interview or wowing the audience with a killer onstage question response, Commit to the Crown Coaching can help you refine your messaging, strengthen your presentation, and strategize to develop your platform and interview approach so you can present your best self. Break a leg!

Jackie Schiffer is a NYC-based Actor, spokesmodel and nonprofit professional. In 2015, she founded of Commit to the Crown Coaching. Her clients have successfully competed on various local, state, national and international stages to pageant wins and finalist placements. Systems clients have competed in include: Miss NY USA/Miss NY Teen USA, Miss New York (America), Miss United States/ Ms. Woman United States, Miss Earth United States/Elite Miss Earth United States, Miss Guyana Universe, Miss Illinois (America), Mrs. New York America, Miss Tourism USA, World’s Perfect Pageant and many others. Follow her @Committothecrowncoaching on Facebook and Instagram and visit www.jackieschiffer.com to learn more! 29

Model Highlights

Autumn Kinkade, Print and runway

Jennifer Wakefield, Print and runway

Emily Rose Williams, Print and runway 30

Dina Alsaid, Plus size model

Tyronda Horrison, Plus size model

Alex Howe, Print and runway (Photographer: Small Town Focus, Dress: Bentley and Lace)

Erica Grace Williams, Teen model

Madelline Patrick, Print and runway

Corlisa Hockless, Print and runway 31

very personal level. Because getting together to take pictures is a very powerful social experience, especially when there is a professional photographer on board. Women call each other sisters at first sight. The Curvy Alliance has always been about Sisterhood and Empowerment, and sometimes when your self-esteem is in the toilet, all you need is someone to tell you, “Put on this t-shirt, someone will do your hair and makeup, and let’s go take some pictures.” I’ve never been one to regularly use current vernacular. As an English Major, the language I used was my defining trait for many years. So when the organization of which I am a lifetime member, The Curvy Alliance, decided to run a recruiting campaign called “Curvy Girls Slay,” I have to admit I approached it with some trepidation. I guess I underestimated the power of popular slang. Women came out of the woodwork to participate in our campaign. They wanted to feel empowered. They wanted to feel beautiful. And mostly they wanted to feel like supermodels without feeling like super sized models. I had no idea current lingo could be so powerful.

most women would at least like one opportunity to feel like one. For a long time, women like myself allowed their size to hinder that desire. Get a bunch of plus size women together and the backstabbing and the fighting becomes all but defunct. That is because we all realize we have the same struggles and celebrate each other’s victories. I have seen plus-size women encourage each other, champion each other and even help each other become healthy at any size. Ideas are shared and inspiration flows.

We all know that we could have 10 people tell us we are beautiful but There is a story of a great sculptor. He when one person who matters tells us revealed his sculpture and people said we are not, it is the end of self esteem “How Beautiful! You have created a masterpiece!” To which he replied, “I have created nothing. I just chipped away at the rough pieces.” Everyone you encounter chips away at your rough pieces to reveal the masterpiece that you are. In turn, it’s your responsibility to chip away at others rough pieces.

as we know it. Little known fact is, the opposite is just as true. A simple phrase like “you are beautiful” can light up a person’s face and give them the confidence to conquer the world, no matter how many people have told them otherwise.

It’s easy to agree that when you have something in common with someone else, a bond is made on that connection. Networking is very powerful that way. But in the digital age in which we Not every woman can be a model, but live, forming those connections can be altogether impersonal. Gone are the days where teenagers used up the home phone for hours on end talking to their friends. Now you can’t pull them away from texting. The communication is the same; just the words and methods have changed.

Women can go from the ugly duckling to the swan with a little encouragement. This is shown in spades in campaigns like Curvy Girls Slay as well as in pageantry. Sure, it takes some courage to subject yourself to judgment and display the way that pageantry does. But when that Crown hits your head, there is no looking down. Which means there’s no time to look down on others... Especially when you’re too busy lifting them up.

This, however, was anything but impersonal. Connections were made on a 33

sch New Year’s bells are fast approaching, ringing out last year’s styles, and welcoming in new trends. While school-style isn’t making dramatic changes, students of all ages can expect some elegant new additions in regard to fabric choices, patterns, embellishments, and shoe style.


First, what pieces can fashionistas look forward to continuing to wear from 2017? One element that will carry over for all age group is comfort. Pairing skinny or bootcut jeans or denim leggings with graphic t-shirts, such as the DC and Marvel superhero logo tops, slipping into soft-cotton, A-line tops over leggings, or layering a city-top under a boyfriend jacket with a pair of distressed denim jeans or skater skirt (see image) will remain in-style throughout 2018. A new element to these casual styles will be the addition of Disney logos on tops and jeans, (H&M, Item 81096). When it comes to comfort, one rule always holds true:

pair a fitted piece with a looser piece, avoiding the overly-baggy, ill-fitting look. School age girls have many options to choose from, with skater skirts and skater dresses taking center stage on the 2018 fashion runways. Critter hoodies, Star Wars “The Force” gear, denim coats, and faux fur, along with large floral prints in vibrant colors, are among 2018’s “Must-Have’s” for the younger set. Young ones will also appreciate the wide-variety of metallic tops, jackets, and shoes that add just the right amount of “pop” to any outfit. A good rule-of-thumb for the young is to select a single metallic item, a top, shoes, or jacket, and pair it with solid colors throughout the rest of the outfit, or with a complementary floral print. When wearing floral, again limit it to a single piece, avoiding the mix-andmatch of florals, or florals with prints. Tweens, having finally earned their own clothing category with stores such as Justice and Dellias, are rocking the floral prints and metallic fabrics and colors like their younger counterparts, with the subtle difference occurring in more muted, smaller floral patterns and background colors. Additionally,

hool style By: Kim Emery-Poulin Today’s International Woman Queen of Queens, 2013

the hip tween wardrobe will include flair scuba dresses worn with tennis sneakers or ankle booties, and paint splatter printed overalls, rompers, and jeans (see photo). And while tweens also love critter hoodies, the colors are again more muted limiting the animal choices to cats, dogs, pandas, and other color-blocked critters. World travel is also capturing tweens’ imaginations as reflected in city-logo tops such as Paris’s Eiffel Tower and the New York City Skyline. These tops, pared with skinny jeans or skater skirts & boyfriend jackets (see photo) are staple 2018 outfits. Finally, parents will rejoice knowing “strong is in” with athletic wear consisting of yoga pants, inspiration/saying tops, and hoodies being sought-after items in every tweens’ wardrobe.

ment sleeves being all-the-rage. Ruffle, single, bell, and balloon sleeves bring a unique and stylish look to tops and take everyday sweatshirts from drabto-fab! Finally, adding metallic pieces, hi-lo maxi skirts and dresses, and accessories with a hint of shimmer and shine will have teens prepared to walk any school hallway with confidence. When the New Year’s bells start to ring, all three age groups can celebrate a few trends common among all the ages, such as the colors-of-the-year ~ red (the ultimate power-color) and royal blue (the new-black). All can shop for pieces with embellishments, which add both versatility and flair to outfits, remembering that a little detail equals a big statement. Last, round out this season’s closet with the addition of the “heel-of-the-year,” ranging in height from the half-inch girl heel to four-inch teen heel; the square heel in a solid-sole, or sequined/glittered sole on ankle/Jersey booties, pumps, Mary Janes, and more are not only fashion forward and extremely versatile, but comfortable to wear and easy to walk in!

Older teens reflect their style-maturity with the addition of cold–shoulder tops in satin and lace. Like young girls and tweens, teens layer their tops over cotton, denim, and even fleece leggings, pencil and side ruffle skirts, and asymmetrical-hem skirts. New to 2018 is the addition of peplum skirts, tops, and jackets worn opposite fitted pieces. Back are classic and clean lines, A parting thought: This season, reas opposed to the loose and flowy lines member that more important than of the previous three years, with state- what you wear is how you wear it. No

style can top confidence and strength projected from within. So, grab your boyfriend jacket, don your slogan-T, slip into your skinny jeans, and strut in your square-heel booties all the while knowing you are beautiful inside, where beauty matters most! Model: Allie Mae Wardrobe: Justice References: Justice, JC Penney, H&M, Macy’s, Gap Kids, Kohl’s and Limited/Limited Too 35


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