Story and photos courtesy of the Miss Black Arizona Scholarship Foundation
Edited by Ariyanna Norman
Glamour, entertainment and a celebration of #BlackGirlMagic – that’s what was in store for the audience at the 2016 Miss Black Arizona Scholarship Pageant. On April 23, six young ladies were crowned the queen of their division on stage at Peoria High School. The talented Kim Anderson, former Ms. Black Arizona and founder of Diva’s of Distinction, hosted the pageant.
Xian Greenley, 4, won the Toddler Miss division. Jayla Hicks, 5, won the Tiny Miss division. Jordan Bolling, 9, won the Little Miss division. Moriah Paynes, 12, won the Junior Miss division. Fourteen-year-old Destiny Hughes from Phoenix won the Teen division and 21-year-old University of Arizona senior Jasmine Raysor won the Miss division. Prizes for the winners include: a savings bonds, scholarships, custom sash and crown, a fashion photo shoot and a year supply of hair products from Strength of Nature Global. Over the next year the new queens will participate in several local and state events and fulfill a year of service to the state of Arizona.
This year’s theme was “Her Story” and each of the 29 contestants had an opportunity to tell her story to the panel of judges and the audience. The areas of competition included: Interview (Miss/Teens only), Personal Introduction, Personal Fitness (Miss/ Teens only), Casual Wear Modeling, Formal Wear, Talent, and On Stage Question & Answer. Contestants also won awards in various categories such as Miss Photogenic, Best Model and Prettiest Smile to just to name a few. The People’s Choice winners were Moriah Paynes and Ariyanna Brown. Miss Congeniality in the Teen Division was won by Aryanna Cotton, our Miss division was won by Paris Dawkins- Anderson. The Miss Community Service winners were Faith Archer and Jordan Bolling.
This year marks eight years since Director Jasmine Crowe revamped the Miss Black Arizona Scholarship Pageant. Over the years, nearly 300 contestants have competed, several girls have gone on to win national pageants, and thousands of dollars in scholarships and prizes has been awarded. The organization has grown immensely, adding an annual Mother – Daughter Tea, MBAZ Girls Day Out, College Time workshop, Father- Daughter Dance and most recently the MBAZ Day of Service to its line-up of yearly events.
The Miss Black Arizona Scholarship Foundation would like to thank the following for all of their support: Black Enterprise, Bronner Bros., Strength of Nature, Cold Stone Creamery, Hungry Howie’s, Hampton Inn and Suites- Glendale at Westgate, Renaissance Hotel Glendale at Westgate, Peoria High School, South Pointe High School, Andy Rodriguez, Heidi Ernst, Diva Nails, Flat Out of Heels, Bazaar Productions, Whitten Printers, the 2016 Miss Black Arizona Contestants, and all of our volunteers, sponsors, judges, staff, and most importantly the community for your support!
The Annual Day of Service will be the first of many royal duties. Pageant contestants collected over 5,000 items to donate to women and children in need at the Sojourner Center. The queens will deliver these items to the center and all contestants are invited to join.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to request our queens at your organizations upcoming events!
Meet The Royal Court 2016-2017:
2016 Toddler Miss Black AZ Xian Greenley
1st Runner-Up Kamira Nelson-Hayes
2016 Tiny Miss Black AZ Jayla Hicks
1st Runner-Up Sunset Alston, 2nd Runner-Up Alana Clark
2016 Little Miss Black AZ Jordan Bolling
1st Runner-Up Sachi Johnson, 2nd Runner-Up Kaleija Lee, 3rd Runner-Up Damoni McLamore, 4th Runner-Up Savannah Oliver
2016 Junior Miss Black AZ Moriah Paynes
1st Runner-Up Jaylise Robinson, 2nd Runner-Up Krysten Nelson-Hayes, 3rd Runner-Up Teri Matthews, 4th Runner-Up Leala Brownlee,
2016 Miss Black Teen AZ Destiny Hughes
1st Runner-Up Aryanna Cotton, 2nd Runner-Up Ashante Etsitty, 3rd Runner-Up India Rhodes, 4th Runner-Up Aryanna Brown
2016 Miss Black AZ Jasmine Raysor
1st Runner-Up Leilonni Robinson, 2nd Runner-Up Paris Dawkins-Anderson, 3rd Runner-Up Deshay Harper, 4th Runner-Up Miracle Turner