Miss Tennessee 2013 Preview

Monday, June 17, 2013 - by Wendy King

When Chandler Lawson begins her studies at The University of Tennessee School of Law in August, the outgoing Miss Tennessee 2012 will have two years of tuition paid in full due to her success as a five year Miss America Organization participant.

A journey that started in 2008 when she was named Miss Scenic City and peaked one year ago when she became the first Miss Chattanooga in over six decades to outright win the state title concludes on Saturday evening when she crowns the 2013 winner in Jackson but not before departing with over $30,000 in scholarships which will cover over two-thirds of her law school expenses.

The four night pageant will be web streamed at www.eplustv6.com starting Wednesday at 9pm with the 36 contestants including eight area representatives competing in the first of three preliminary rounds.   The top 15 will compete in Saturday’s finals until one ultimately is chosen to succeed Ms. Lawson as the state’s goodwill ambassador for  the Children’s Miracle Network and the Governor’s Official Spokesperson for Character Education in Tennessee Schools.  The 2013 winner receives a $13,000 scholarship and will be a member of a Miss America Class of 2014 that will be the first in nine years to compete in Atlantic City when the pageant returns to its birthplace in September.  The finals will be televised on Sunday Sept. 15, in a homecoming that is expected to attract a worldwide audience just over nine months after Ms. Lawson finished in the top 10 at the 2013 pageant in Las Vegas.

Ms. Lawson, who graduated from UT-Chattanooga last year, is not only a member of the final Miss America class to compete in Vegas, but she made Tennessee pageant history as the first state recipient of the Duke of Edinburgh bronze medal for self-development and also as the second runner-up for the prestigious Miss America Quality of Life Award for outstanding community service as the founder of 5 Loaves 4 Kids in her hometown of Tullahoma.

The area contestants hoping to inherit Ms. Lawson’s job are Miss Chattanooga Dacey Winkleman a UTC senior from Winchester majoring in Molecular Biology; Miss Country Sunshine Maria Shepherd of Rhea County who is a senior Music Education major at Lee University;  Miss Dogwood Festival Melanie Rush of McMinnville who is an incoming freshman at UTC; Miss Fall Fest Madyson Foster also of Cleveland who recently graduated with degrees in Dance and Business at Birmingham-Southern College;  Miss Metropolitan Jaclyn Torrento of Nashville who is a Belmont University senior majoring in Entertainment Studies;  Miss Scenic City Amy Catherine Flynn of Knoxville who is a UT-Knoxville senior Marketing major and Miss Tennessee Valley Hannah Robison from Martin who is a junior Chemistry major at UT-Martin.

Hamilton County native Hannah Disterdick who now resides in Memphis will be representing the city in Jackson.  The Soddy-Daisy High School and UT-Knoxville graduate is the daughter of Miss Tennessee 1982 Desiree Daniels.

Miss Chattanooga Dacey Winkleman, 22, Winchester

UT-Chattanooga Senior majoring in Molecular Biology

Talent – Baton Twirling, “River Deep, Mountain High”

Platform – OCD Isn’t As Easy as 1, 2, 3

Fun Fact – 2012 UTC Homecoming Queen

 

Miss Country Sunshine Maria Shepherd, 21, Cleveland

Lee University Junior majoring in Music Education and Clarinet Performance

Talent – Vocal, “Nuit Detoiles”

Platform – Alzheimer’s Awareness, Reaching to Remember Education

Fun Fact – Her crowning moment was featured on ABC’s Miss America preview show

 

Miss Dogwood Festival Melanie Rush 18, McMinnville

UT-Chattanooga Incoming Freshman

Talent – Acro-Routine, “Jailhouse Rock”

Platform – ALZ Can’t Remember ABCs


Miss Fall Fest Madyson Foster, 21, Cleveland 

2013 Graduate, Birmingham-Southern College, Dance/Business

Talent – Contemporary Ballet en Pointe, “Palladio”

Platform – Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Chattanooga

Fun Fact – Was an Extra in the film “42”

 

Miss Memphis Hannah Disterdick, 24, Memphis (native of Soddy-Daisy)

2012 Graduate, Lipscomb University Registered Dietician Program

2011 Graduate, University of Tennessee-Knoxville, B.S. in Nutrition

Talent – Vocal, “If I Ain’t Got You” 

Platform - HEAL from Within, Healthy Eating, Active Living

Fun Fact – Tennessee’s Junior Miss 2007


Miss Metropolitan Jaclyn Torrento, 21, Nashville

Belmont University Senior majoring in Entertainment Industry Studies

Talent – Vocal, “I Know You Won’t”

Platform – Hands to Larger Service (www.handstolargerservice.com)

Fun Fact – Jumped onstage at a Boys Like Girls concert and danced with lead vocalist Martin Johnson

 

Miss Scenic City Amy Catherine Flynn, 22, Knoxville ( www.AmyCatherineFlynn.com )

University of Tennessee Senior majoring in Marketing/International Business

Talent – Vocal, “ (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman”

Platform – Break the Silence, Preventing Child Sexual Abuse Education

Fun Fact – American Idol Hollywood Finalist in 2008

 

Miss Tennessee Valley Hannah Robison, 19,  Martin

University of Tennessee at Martin Junior majoring in Chemistry

Talent – Piano, “El Cumbanchero” 

Platform – Student Advocacy for Underprivileged Children Education

Fun Fact - She has custom made sunglasses due to having very long natural eyelashes. 



Mitch Rossell To Perform At The Revelry Room Friday Night

Chattanoogan Mitch Rossell steps off the road with Garth Brooks and steps into the Revelry Room Friday evening to bring his well written hit song now charting "Ask Me How I Know" recorded by Garth.  Rossell is a gifted singer/songwriter raising the volume levels in country music. Rossell is on the road this summer, opening select dates for Garth Brooks and headlining ... (click for more)

Ice Balloons Brings Unique Show To Sluggo's Sept. 20

Ice Balloons, featuring members of TV On The Radio, Samiam, and Surfbort, will perform Sept. 20 at Sluggo's. Their show includes a "mixture of weird videos, noise, a fly on vocals and an exuberant amount of energy that will leave concert goers in a state of psychedelic utopia."  (click for more)

Coolidge Park Crowd Gets Twilight, Cricket Chirping As Solar Eclipse Arrives

A crowd at Coolidge Park and the nearby Walnut Street Bridge got twilight and cricket chirping as the heralded solar eclipse finally arrived at mid-afternoon Monday. As the moon moved across the sun around 2:30 p.m., birds quit chirping and began to roost. Crickets started going full force. Lights on the Market Street Bridge began to flicker on. The event, sponsored by Comcast, ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Airport President Gets New Contract Amid Double-Digit Growth, Improvements

Chattanooga Airport President Terry Hart has been given a six-year extension on his contract amid double-digit passenger increases and a host of airport improvements. There is no increase in his $158,377 pay, but the board plans to put in annual performance reviews with some built-in bonuses. Jim Hall, vice chairman of the Airport Board, said it is also important that the ... (click for more)

Tom Decosimo: My Great-Great-Grandparents Are Buried At The Confederate Cemetery - And Response

To Mayor Berke, I cannot add any more to the very fine comments made in opposition to your empty jester to remove the city as a trustee of the Confederate Cemetery. I can, however, add some personal perspective as my great-great-grandparents are buried there. Penelope McDermott Cooke was a Daughter of the Confederacy and was concerned the remains of the Confederates who ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The New Mean

Until last Monday I believed nobody could ever hurt my feelings again. In the half-century I have been a writer I’ve had hundreds of people take swipes at me, been called more names, and received more hate mail than you can imagine. I also know the only way anyone can hurt you is for you to allow it and, brother, it is nigh impossible to get inside me. My defense mechanism is because ... (click for more)