May 21, 2005 – Allison Bourne-Vanneck, a 21-year-old graduate of The College of William and Mary, was crowned Miss Virgin Islands 2005 on Saturday night at the Reichhold Center for the Arts. She swept awards in the categories of talent, interview and community service. Bourne-Vanneck will go on to represent the Virgin Islands in the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City.
Bourne-Vanneck is currently seeking her master's of business administration and a master's degree in journalism. As the former three-time St. Thomas Open Golf Champion and the undefeated Virgin Islands Junior Golf Champion, Bourne-Vanneck plans to use the title to enhance the lives of other young women through team-building exercises, group discussions and sports.
Bourne-Vanneck did a dramatic monologue about a belly dancer to win the talent competition.
First runner-up was Alba Harrigan, a 22-year-old senior at the University of the Virgin Islands, where she is seeking a bachelor's degree in fine arts. Harrigan is a former Miss UVI. For the talent portion, she performed a dramatic monologue.
Jamaica Hamilton, an 18-year-old senior at Gift Hill High School on St. John received special recognition for having the highest grade point average of the group. Hamilton read an original poem for her talent.
Karolyn Marie Felix, a 17-year-old senior at St. Croix Educational Complex High School, also competed. For her talent, Felix danced a salsa remix.
The fifth contestant, Davina Martinez, 21, a sophomore at the University of the Virgin Islands, was unable to compete due to illness.
The young women were judged 35 percent on talent, while swimsuit, casual wear, evening wear and on-stage questioning made up 10 percent each of the contestants' total scores.
On Friday, each contestant completed the interview portion of the competition, which made up 25 percent of the score.
Before she passed her crown to the new Miss Virgin Islands, 2004 winner Kinila Callendar spoke. "Had it not been for this scholarship organization, my life would have been headed in a different direction," she said. Callendar will be attending Johnson and Wales University in the fall with scholarships through her Miss America experience.
Each of the four contestants received $2,500 for participating.
"It's about equipping women to be phenomenal in their lives," said 1990 Miss America Debbye Turner, who emceed the event.
The cast of the pageant included 2000 Miss America Heather French Henry, 1996 Miss America Shawntel Smith Wuerch and 2004 Miss Arizona Katherine Kennedy. Gospel singer Evangeline Parker performed as well.
This is the second year for the Miss Virgin Islands Scholarship Pageant. It was a dream of Shannon B. Skokos, executive director. Having had her own college and law school educations paid for through competing in the Miss America Scholarship Program, Skokos wanted to provide the same opportunity to young women of the Virgin Islands desiring a college education. Nationwide, $45 million in scholarships are awarded every year to contestants in the Miss America organization.
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