Senior crowned “Miss Black & Gold” by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity

NEW ORLEANS (Feb.21, 2013)-  A New Orleans psychology senior excelled among seven other Dillard competitors to be crowned “Miss Black & Gold” by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity on Dec. 7 in the Professional Schools Building.

Since then, Melanie Martin also placed third while representing the Beta Phi Chapter in the Louisiana District competition in Lafayette.

“I felt humbled, honored and blessed,” she said. “I was nervous, but the other girls and I supported each other and it was a great bonding experience with people from all over.”

Other competitors in the DU competition included:

  • Najah Furgusson, a sophomore biology major from Baltimore, Md., who was crowned Miss Black.
  • Tenene McLaughlin, a junior biology major from New Orleans, who was crowned Miss Gold.
  • Taylor O’Connor, a senior political science major from New Orleans, who was crowned Miss Congeniality.
  • Shelby Edwards, a junior chemistry major from Meridian, Miss.
  • Latiera Harmon, a senior theatre major from New Orleans.
  • Charne Thomas, a senior chemistry major from New Orleans.

Not only does she represent the fraternity, but she has to show women on campus to be a lady.

Jory Buskey, the chapter pageant coordinator, said the pageant’s purpose was to select a female representative with lady-like attributes to help create service projects and participate in chapter events. The pageant guidelines noted the winner could compete up the ladder in district in Lafayette, regionals competition in Baton Rouge and perhaps even the nationals in Houston.

He added that more than 50 women showed up for the informational prior to the pageant, and interviews culled the number to seven for the event itself.

The pageant judging categories included swimwear, talent, evening gowns, oral expression, and poise and appearance. Judges included Dr. Eartha Johnson, a psychology professor and president of the Faculty Senate; Dawn Holmes, administrative assistant to the chaplain; and Hermine Crump Jones.