Miss Gem County Jade Ingram: A Bright, Beautiful and Classy Gem of a Woman

by Michael Strickland

Excitement, love and contagious energy filled the room. I watched in awe as one of the finest women in our area was crowned as the winner and representative of an exceptional title and honor.

On Monday, June 12, I had the best seat in the house to witness this miracle as it unfolded. The affable, intelligent, fit, and beautiful Jade Ingram now wears the crown as Miss Gem County. I feel privileged to have been a part of this unique experience. There was something magical about the audience.

Members of the close-knit community packed the auditorium. They supported all of the young women, cheered at the same moments, felt the same emotions together. The expressions I read on all of the faces that night were also written on mine. In that echo of our humanity, we were as close to being one as humans can ever be.

The spirit of unity that crisp evening at Emmett Middle School created feelings of peace, love and joy that can be hard to find in our fast-paced, often-fragmented world. Miss Ingram won on a platform called Erase the Stigma: Suicide Awareness and Prevention.

"Suicide is the second leading cause of death in citizens age 15-34," Ingram said. "In addition, Idaho has the fifth highest rate of suicides in the United States. Despite this, suicide is still considered a taboo subject ... I intend to change that."

Jade Ingram is crowned Miss Gem County
Miss Gem County plans to use her influential new role to "a stepping stone to reach out to the community," to help "destigmatize mental illness and suicidal thoughts and instead, discuss the issue at hand and provide support within the community."

 It was an absolute honor to be asked to volunteer and take part in The Miss Gem County Scholarship Pageant. This is a priceless opportunity for young women and is packed with moments they will always remember. I'm really looking forward to being a further part of this movement. Miss Ingram's victory had the mark of a historic moment and will be extremely special as she advances her good cause.

The Miss Gem County Scholarship Pageant is an affiliate of the Miss Idaho and Miss America Scholarship Organizations. The Miss America Organization is the number one resource in the world for women to receive educational scholarships.

Last year, the Miss America Scholarship Organization made available over $45 million dollars to 12,000 women. The Miss Gem County Scholarship Pageant is a non-profit scholarship program whose purpose is awarding scholarships to deserving young women ages 17 to 24 years old and providing a forum for their community service. The program includes one additional scholarship opportunities for Teens (ages 13-17).

 Are you a talented young woman and need a way to finance your college education? Competing for a local title at the Miss Gem County Scholarship Pageant is the first step in fulfilling these goals.

Check out their Facebook page for more information.