March 15, 2009 –
MAYETTA: Tribal member Marie Clement, Mayetta, was crowned 2009 Ms. Wheelchair Kansas today at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Topeka, Kan.
Marie won the pageant over Cherie Armstrong, Edwardsville, and Ashley Wagner of Leoti and Manhattan, in a series of events that were held during the weekend. Contestants were judged by a four-person panel in two personal interview sessions and on their accomplishments, self-perception, communication, and projection skills. The judging concluded today with a platform speech presentation and two on-stage questions. Marie’s platform was about improving public accessibility and developing an online forum for the disabled.
The contest was not a beauty contest but rather a competition to select an articulate, accomplished delegate who will serve as a role model and spokesperson for people with disabilities in Kansas. Marie will travel throughout Kansas educating groups about the issues of importance to people with disabilities and share her voice and platform with the community through presentations, public appearances, and interaction with the media. She will also compete for the national title of Ms. Wheelchair America that will be held in Rapid City, S.D. in August.
The Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Health Center sponsored Marie as a contestant and the PBPN, as a whole, was singled out and given a round of applause at the pageant for their major financial support of the Ms. Wheelchair Kansas Pageant for the past four years.