|Miss Belize 2001-2002|
Twenty three year-old Karen Russell was crowned Miss
Belize 2001-2002 last Friday evening at the Belize City Center. Miss Russell,
representing "The New Image for a New Millennium" will attend the Miss Universe
Pageant sometime next year. In her biography data Karen attributes "the person"
she is to the teachings instilled by her family, the lessons she learned in the
classroom, and the experiences she has encountered in her life. She stated she
has entered pageants before, and admits that, while the previous decisions were
all self-motivated, the decision to enter the Miss Belize Pageant was a result
of much encouragement from her friends, support from her family, as well as the
desire to act as an ambassador for her country.
Presently, Karen is pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in
Business Administration. She also works part-time at the tourism booth at the
International Airport as a tourist information operator.
As the new Miss Belize 2001-2002, Karen will have a planned itinerary for her
year of reign. Tiffara Nicole Reynolds was named first runner-up and Becky
Bernard was voted the second runner-up.
Pageant has come a long way. The following information about the history
of Pageants Belize/Miss Belize Pageant was contributed by Pageants Belize
- Miss Belize Organization.
The Pageant that is now Miss Belize began as Miss Belize Independence in
1966. At that time each of the six districts chose a contestant to be its
representative in the Miss Belize Independence Pageant. Belize was on the road
to independence and Miss Belize Independence symbolized that. In essence, this
was just a beauty pageant and nothing more. Miss Independence would participate
in the Tenth of September parade.
As Miss Belize began to
participate in international pageants, most notably Miss Universe, and Belize
achieved its independence, the pageant became Miss Belize with the sole purpose
of selecting a person to participate in the Battle of St. George's Caye Day and
Independence Day parades and the Miss Universe Pageant.
In 1987, under the directorship of Solie Arguelles of Pageants Belize, Miss
Belize evolved with a new perspective and focus; one which was tied into the
newly prioritized tourism industry. For the first time the pageant was promoted
by the private sector in a professional manner with a clear vision. Miss Belize
was to be a goodwill ambassador and standards and criteria were defined for
prospective candidates. Miss Belize became more involved in national activities
from which she gained knowledge of Belize, making her well-versed in all aspects
of Belizean life and natural attractions and resources. This prepared her for
the role of Belize's Ambassador both nationally and internationally. She also
began to attend other international pageants such as Miss World, Miss
Wonderland, Reina del Coco, Nuestra Belleza, Reina de la Costa, Miss Teen
Latina, Belleza Mundial, Miss Caribbean and Miss Meso
As Miss Belize enters the new millennium, it is
obvious that there are existing realities and new challenges, which confront
both Belize as a developing country and the rest of the world. These are diverse
and many, and range from global warming and ozone layer depletion, to crushing
cycles of poverty and child abuse, to globalization and the market economy and
the new plague which kills - AIDS.
Miss Belize must fit
into these new realities with a purpose of making a difference while pursuing
her own dream. She can no longer be just a pretty face and a goodwill
ambassador. It is with that in mind that Pageants Belize was re-structured and