by Delta Discovery Staff
Lorraine Tom of Chefornak, who is the current reigning Miss Cama-i, was crowned the 2019 Miss World Eskimo Indian Olympics (WEIO) this past weekend in Fairbanks during WEIO.
Tom, who is 22 years old, competed with six other contestants from throughout the state for the Miss WEIO title.
“I am honored to be crowned 2019 Miss WEIO!” said Tom on coronation night as congratulations poured in on her social media pages.
The other contestants included Geneva Wright – Miss Nuchalawoyya of Tanana, Rayme Harris – Miss Arctic Circle of Wasilla, Destiny Demosky Tritt – Miss Fairbanks Native Association, Sophie Swope of Bethel, Jillian Stettenbenz – Miss Arctic Native Brotherhood of Nome, and Lillian Kippi – Miss Top of the World of Barrow.
Along with her Miss WEIO title, Tom was awarded the Most Traditional award. For her talent presentation she cut a salmon, filleting it and preparing it for drying. She spoke about climate change and pollution and advocated for the younger generation’s subsistence opportunities.
The queen contestants participated in a myriad of activities in the community including speaking with youth and walking in the Golden Days Parade.
Along with the talent presentation, the queen contestants participated in a personal interview with the judges, and answering an impromptu question where they publicly spoke in front of the crowd WEIO. They also had a photo shoot. This year the photographer was Selena Sam of Tanana who took the ladies’ photos and chose Miss Photogenic which was awarded to Rayme Harris of Wasilla.
During introduction of the Miss WEIO contestants, announcer and queen coordinator Marjorie Tahbone of Nome introduced each contestant and described the regalia they were wearing, what they were made of, and who made them.
2018 Miss WEIO Kaylene Evans passed on the crown to Tom on Friday night. The Miss WEIO sash is brand new this year. It was also remade by Rochelle Adams and her mom Angela of Beaver. It is made of tanned moose hide and beaded in the Athabascan traditional style beading. Tom will be the first Miss WEIO to don the new sash.
During her victory round, the new Miss WEIO waved to the crowd while her bio was read.
Miss WEIO Coordinator Marjorie Tahbone thanked all the judges for their help and volunteerism in this year’s pageant.
Miss WEIO 2019 Awards
Miss WEIO: Lorraine Tom
1st Runner Up: Geneva Wright
2nd Runner Up: Gillian Stettenbenz
Most Photogenic: Rayme Harris
Miss Congeniality: Geneva Wright
Most Traditional: Lorraine Tom
Most Talented: Geneva Wright
After her victory walk, Miss WEIO’s first duty was to hand out the awards for the Seal Skinning contest.
Congratulations to all the Miss WEIO award winners!