‘A long time coming’: Emma Terry named 2022 Miss Shelby County

By SCOTT MIMS / Staff Writer 

COLUMBIANA—Emma Terry of Leeds was visibly shocked when she heard her name called as the winner of Miss Shelby County 2022 on Saturday night, July 10 at the Shelby County Arts Council’s Black Box Theatre.

As Terry made her way toward center stage, the emotional release seemed to spread like dominoes throughout the packed venue, as everyone had waited a full extra year for a new winner to be crowned—and to hopefully put another step between the COVID-19 pandemic and a reclaimed state of normalcy.

“Absolute shock” is how Terry described hearing her name called, “and then it was like tears because I did not expect anything today. I was coming just to get some experience and then when I heard my name, I was like, ‘Whoa, mind blown, holy guacamole!’”

Terry’s winnings for the evening included in-kind scholarships of $54,832 from the University of Montevallo and $12,000 from Jefferson State Community College; Miss Shelby County 2022 cash scholarships totaling $2,400; and Miss Shelby County gifts and services totaling $2,012.

For her talent portion of the competition, Terry performed ballet en pointe to “GG Medley.”

“I’m just so excited to spend this next year with the Vignette Club, the Director Miss Pam Oliver, My new teen Ali,” Terry said. “I’m so excited for this next year and can’t wait to serve the people of Shelby County.”

She went on to thank everyone who supported her leading up to the big night.

“Thank you to everyone who makes this pageant possible, all the lovely ladies who are here tonight helping zip gowns, providing support throughout the day. I am just so happy and really cannot wait to serve this community and be its representative for the next year,” Terry said.

Ali Mims of Harpersville was the other big winner of the evening, as she was crowned Miss Shelby County’s Outstanding Teen 2022. Mims also was named the talent winner among the Outstanding Teen candidates, for her vocal performance of the well-known Italian aria, “O Mio Babbino Caro” by Giacomo Puccini.

Mims’ winnings included a $500 cash scholarship provided by the University of Montevallo as well as $1,617 in Miss Shelby County’s Outstanding Teen 2022 gifts and services.

“It was so unexpected, and I was just so grateful and thanking God for this opportunity,” Mims said after the pageant. “I am so excited.”

Terry and Mims will advance to the state level as candidates for Miss Alabama 2022 and Miss Alabama’s Outstanding Teen 2022, respectively.

Other winners among the Miss Shelby County candidates were Emma Wright, second runner-up; Mary Coker-Green, first runner-up and talent winner for her performance playing the fiddle to “The Devil Went Down to Georgia”; and Emee Baldwin, community service and Nana Ford Award winner.

In addition, Hailey Adams was named first runner-up Miss Shelby County Outstanding Teen 2022, and Chailyn Riley was named the Sparkle and Glitter Award recipient.

Prior to the closing ceremony and the crowning of winners, Miss Shelby County 2020 Shiann Harper and Miss Shelby County’s Outstanding Teen 2020 Marissa Luna did their farewell walks across the stage. Also, the emcee of the event and provider of entertainment was Miss Alabama 2021 Lauren Bradford.

“You can definitely say that it was a long time coming,” said Bragan Feldman, member of the Vignette Club, the pageant’s sponsor. “We had two great years with our now former Miss Shelby County (and) Miss Shelby County Outstanding Teen. We had this time to really prepare and get excited for the new girls that we have coming in so that we can help them get ready for the state pageants.”

Feldman explained that the Vignette Club uses the pageant as a fundraiser so they can give back to schools in the community and charitable organizations each month.

“You can definitely tell that everybody was anticipating it because we had a packed house. Everybody was looking forward to it, not just us,” Feldman said.

For more photos from the pageant, visit Shelbycountyphotos.com.