Today we’d like to introduce you to Jaleishia Walton.
Hi Jaleishia, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
My name is Jaleishia Walton, I’m a travel nurse and owner of 501c3 nonprofit Miss Juneteenth of Georgia. Miss Juneteenth of Georgia provides a forum for young women to enhance both self-esteem and self-expression while encouraging cultural awareness.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
One of the main struggles I’ve had with hosting this event is the lack of knowledge. Again, Juneteenth is not something we grew up knowing about so I have to try to educate the girls and even sometimes the parents on the meaning of Juneteenth. So when you have so many people not educated on black history and culture of course they’re not head over heels to participate.
Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
My name is Jaleishia Walton, I’m a travel nurse and owner of 501c3 nonprofit Miss Juneteenth of Georgia. Miss Juneteenth of Georgia provides a forum for young women to enhance both self-esteem and self-expression while encouraging cultural awareness. What sets Miss Juneteenth of GA aside from other pageants is that it’s a scholarship pageant. We give the grand prize winner $500. We also do activities with the contestants leading up to Juneteenth. I want the girls to have the knowledge to take with them after the pageant is over.
What sort of changes are you expecting over the next 5-10 years?
In 5-10 years, I see Miss Juneteenth of GA on a national level. I want to give at least $5,000 in scholarship monies and educate people all over on the meaning of Juneteenth. Since my first Miss Juneteenth pageant, I’ve had directors from Tennessee, Alabama, Texas and Florida to contact me and ask how can they start this pageant in their hometowns. I want to continue to help them until we have a Miss Juneteenth pageant in every state.
- Website: http://missjuneteenthpageant.org/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Miss-Juneteenth-of-GA-102288021828042/
D.J. Whitman- photography by D.J.