Chattanooga’s Darby Schumacher, who is one of the premier junior scientists in the nation, struck the right chemistry with the Scenic City Pageants judges on Sunday afternoon as the Baylor School senior was chosen Miss Metropolitan 2014 at the four title Miss Tennessee local preliminary before a near capacity audience at the Chattanooga State Humanities Auditorium.
Ms. Schumacher, who at 17 is the youngest winner of the Metropolitan title in its 12 year history, was also the Overall Interview Award recipient among the 19 contestants.
Joining Ms. Schumacher at the 2014 state pageant in Jackson will be a trio of Nashville collegians – Miss Chattanooga Jaclyn Torrento and Miss Tennessee Valley Hayley Lewis, both of whom attend Belmont University along with Miss Scenic City Kristen Mosley who is a senior at Vanderbilt University. The four will each receive a $500 scholarship and will make appearances throughout the area on behalf of Children’s Miracle Network, STEM education and numerous other events.
Ms. Torrento was the 2013 Miss Metropolitan and a top 10 finalist at last month’s Miss Tennessee Pageant. She also won the Miss America State Quality of Life Award for being the founder of Hands to Larger Service which encourages youth volunteerism. Miss Lewis, who is a native of Independence, MO, participated in the recent Cycling for Miracles event fundraiser for Children’s Hospital at Erlanger during her first ever trip to Chattanooga. Miss Mosley, who is from Jasper, Alabama, was the 1st runner up to Miss Tennessee 2012 and former Miss Chattanooga Chandler Lawson, who emceed the pageant.
Dacey Winkleman, the UTC Honors Senior who was Miss Chattanooga 2013, was first runner-up to Ms. Mosley.
Ms. Schumacher has received local, state and national acclaim for her research paper “A Filter Today Keeps Pollutants Away: A Study of Nanofiber Based Stormwater Filtration”. She was the second place winner in the Environmental Science category at May’s National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium in Dayton, OH receiving a Department of Defense medal and an $8,000 college scholarship. She won the 2013 Tennessee Junior Academy of Sciences competition at Belmont and the Second Grand Prize at this year’s Chattanooga Regional Science and Engineering Fair.
She is currently undecided about where she will attend college after graduating next year, but she has received a multitude of scholarship opportunities. Ms. Schumacher is a tutor for inner-city students and is an intern at Lamp Post Group. She may be meeting President Barack Obama when he visits the city on Tuesday afternoon as the Lamp Post employees may be making a presentation to the Commander In Chief.
Miss Tennessee 2013 Shelby Thompson of Franklin who is the daughter of Miss Chattanooga 1977 Eunice Belew Thompson was a special guest at the pageant. Ms. Thompson unveiled her Miss America Pageant talent presentation, the aria “Time to Say Goodbye”. She will depart for Atlantic City in early September as the pageant makes its well publicized return to its birthplace with the 2014 competition taking place only eight months after the 2013 event.
Scenic City Pageant Results
Miss Chattanooga – Jaclyn Torrento (Overall Evening Wear)
1st Runner-Up – Maggie Belew
2nd Runner-Up – Maria Shepherd
Miss Metropolitan – Darby Schumacher (Overall Interview)
1st Runner Up – Rachel Holder
2nd Runner-Up – Christine Williamson
Miss Scenic City - Kristen Mosley (Overall Talent)
1st Runner-Up - Dacey Winkleman (Overall Lifestyle and Fitness)
2nd Runner-Up – Caty Davis
Miss Tennessee Valley – Hayley Lewis
1st Runner-Up – Brooke Hudgins
2nd Runner-Up - Natalie Newbill