Miss Burtonsville crowned Miss Maryland

June 29, 2003|by Chris Copley

Capping a week of pageant activities and three days of competition, a new Miss Maryland was selected by a seven-judge panel Saturday night.

Miss Burtonsville Marina Harrison of Severn, Md., will serve as Miss Maryland for 2003-04. She will be a goodwill ambassador and spokesperson for the Miss Maryland organization to school, civic and government groups within the state through her tenure.

She also will represent Maryland at the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City in September.

For being crowned Miss Maryland, Harrison earns a scholarship worth $16,000.

First runner-up was Miss Catoctin Jessica Diaz of Cumberland, Md. She earned $6,500 in scholarship money.

Second runner-up was Miss Chesapeake Tiffany Jenkins of Silver Spring, Md. She earned scholarship money worth $4,000.

Third runner-up was Miss Frostburg Laura Kelley of Olney, Md. She won $3,000 in scholarship money.

Fourth runner-up was Miss Monocacy Nikki Gouker of Middletown, Md., a crowd favorite throughout the pageant. She received $2,500 in scholarship money.


Susan Powell, Miss America 1981 and host of Discovery Channel's "Home Matters," was mistress of ceremonies for the evening. After an opening dance featuring recording artist Dustin James and all 30 Miss Maryland contestants, Powell read the names of the 10 semi-finalists who competed Saturday night.

The 10 semi-finalists were, in addition to Harrison, Diaz, Jenkins, Kelley and Gouker, Miss Free State Lindsay Farris, Miss Northern Chesapeake Michelle Orey, Miss Howard County Kinya Young, Miss Southern Maryland Vickie Kalasinsky and Miss Wicomico Rachel Petty. Each semi-finalist earned a $1,000 scholarship.

Also receiving awards the final night were Miss Queen City Elizabeth Borowsky and Miss Rocky Gap Denise Yarbough. They received nonfinalist talent awards; each won $500.

Other scholarship winners will be named at a breakfast and awards ceremony today.

Miss Maryland President Dale Bradshaw said the pageant opens doors for young women - but they've got to work for it.

"This process is about education and empowerment. This is about healthy competition," Bradshaw said. "And that's what America is about - healthy competition."

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