Ms. Senior Shelby County and Heart of Dixie 2015 crowned
By PHOEBE DONALD ROBINSON / Community Columnist
The “Making a Memory” 2015 Ms. Senior Shelby County Pageant was held on May 1 at Morningstar United Methodist Church.
Gwen Baldwin was crowned Ms. Senior Heart of Dixie 2015, and Sara Jo Burks was crowned Ms. Senior Shelby County.
Edna Sealy of Shelby Shores was first runner up, and Jean Taylor was crowned Ms. Congeniality.
The ladies are of the “Age of Elegance,” which is over 60, and competed in evening gown, talent, philosophy of life and interview.
The winners will vie for the title of Ms. Senior Alabama Pageant on July 18 at Wallace Community College.
Ms. Senior Alabama 2008 Edwina Chappell was pageant director and Ms. Senior Alabama and Shelby County 2012 Niva Dorough and Ms. Senior Alabama Executive Director Karen Guice were emcees.
A Who’s Who of title holders were in attendance: Ms. Senior Alabama 2009 Sally Beth Vick; Ms. Senior Alabama and Heart of Dixie 2013 Donna Shaw McGuffie; Ms. Senior Alabama 2014 and third runner up Ms. Senior America 2014 Renee Glass Pierce; Ms. Senior Alabama 1997 Betty Leeth Haynes; Ms. Senior Shelby County 2014 Ellen Brake; Ms. Senior Heart of Dixie 2014 Edna Sealy; Miss Shelby County 2015 Amanda Ford; Ms. Senior Shelby County 2011 Mary Traylor; Miss Preteen Historic Alabama Kinley Callahan of Alabaster.
Special guest was Roy Drinkard of Cullman, the oldest living Marine in the United States, and entertainment by Mayor Mark McLaughlin of Westover.
Baldwin has been a resident of Shelby County for 37 years. Married to Master Beekeeper George Baldwin for 38 years, the Baldwins have two daughters and two grandchildren. Baldwin is designer and sales area manager for Kravet, LeeJofa, Brunschwig and Ralph Lauren Design Fabrics.
She is a charter member of North Shelby Baptist Church. For her talent, Baldwin danced through decades of music showing the evolution of music through dance.
Burks is a resident of Troy, Alabama, where she is employed as assistant director of Housing and Resident Life.
She also teaches in the Sorrell College of Business and volunteers with Pike Animal Shelter and the Boys and Girls Club.
She has been a pageant judge for many years, enjoys cooking and sewing, singing in her church choir and collecting teapots. For her talent, she sang “Some of These Days.”
“You are never too old and it’s never too late to reach for your dream,” said Burks.