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Indigenous Voices of the Colorado Plateau

Miss Navajo

History Mission statement Duties and responsibilities Miss Navajo

 Indigenous Voices




 Kaibab Paiute

     Code Talkers
     Miss Navajo
     The Long Walk
     Livestock Reduction

 White Mountain Apache

Save the Peaks!

 Merriam Report



Beulah Melvin Allen, M.D. was the first Miss Navajo crowned during the Navajo Nation Fair in 1952. The selection process was simple. Contestants vying for the title would stand in front of the audience of approximately 10,000 people. The one who received the loudest applause would be crowned Miss Navajo.

For about five years, there were two contests: one for Miss Navajo and one for Miss Modern Navajo. Miss Navajo would represent the traditional Navajo ways of life, and Miss Modern Navajo would represent the modern ways of life.

Eventually the Miss Navajo Nation Pageant replaced the applause competition. This current competition encompasses both the Navajo and Modern way of life in traditional and contemporary skills, with talent competitions lasting several days. During the pageant competition, contestants demonstrate many beautiful traditional skills and talents. The most important qualification for the Miss Navajo Nation pageant contestants is to be fluent in Navajo and English languages. The contestants must also possess knowledge of the Navajo culture and tradition. Unlike most beauty pageants throughout the world, the Miss Navajo Nation pageant is of beauty found within oneself, instead of judging outward appearance only.


Mission Statement

In keeping with Navajo culture and tradition, the role of Miss Navajo Nation is to exemplify the essence and characters of First Woman, White Shell Woman and Changing Woman and to display leadership as the Goodwill Ambassador. Miss Navajo Nation represents womanhood and fulfills the role of "grandmother, mother, aunt, and sister" to the Navajo people; therefore she can speak as a leader, teacher, counselor, advisor and friend. In March 1999, the Branch Chiefs of the Navajo government agreed that tone of the fundamental principals of the Navajo government should be the preservation of the Navajo culture. It shall be the mission of the Office of Miss Navajo Nation to encourage every Navajo to assist in the preservation of Navajo culture and Miss Navajo Nation will represent the importance of Navajo women with respect and honor.


Duties and responsibilities

1. To the best of her ability, represent the Navajo Nation as a goodwill Ambassador by educating the general public on the history, tradition, and culture of the Navajo people. The purpose and intent of the Goodwill Ambassadorship is to enhance the reputation of the Navajo nation and increase the number of patronage on the Navajo Nation; and

2. Participate in fund-raising activities for the Office of Miss Navajo and other charitable organizations at the choosing of Miss Navajo Nation to enhance the reputation of an increase the number of patronage on the Navajo Nation; and

3. Participate in other activities as authorized by the Office of the President and Vice President in accordance with Navajo Nation policies and ethics laws.


List of former Miss Navajo Nation

1952-1953           Beulah Melvin Allen, M. D.
1953-1954           Ida Gail Organick
1954-1956           Charlotte Lawrence Greenstone
1956-1957           Emma Louise Anderson/Geraldine Morgan Pete
1957-1958           Charlotte Lawrence Greenstone
1958-1959           Dorothy Curtis Fixico/Vivian Arviso
1959-1960           Joy Jean Sells Hanley/Elsie Curley Raymond
1960-1961           Roseanne Kellywood Bahe/Bernice Skeet
1961-1962           Lois Haskie Kansaswood/Dr. Alyse Neundrof
1962-1963           Rowena Yazzie McCabe/Emma Joe
1963-1964           Anna Mae Begay Fowler
1964-1965           Sally Ann Zah Joe
1965-1966           Carol Ann Yazzie Showalter
1966-1967           Sarah Ann Johnson Luther
1967-1968           Thelma Pablo Francisco
1968-1969           Rose McCabe Wauneka
1969-1970           Rose Ann Bekis Kenneth
1970-1971           Linda Hanove Schweigman
1971-1972           Genevieve Lee Salt
1972-1973           Janet Yazzie Caller
1973-1974           Delphine Curley Ludlum
1974-1975           Gilene Begay
1975-1976           Angela Barney Nez
1976-1977           Rosita Tsosie Holiday
1977-1978           Marilyn Help Hood
1978-1979           Bobby Bia
1979-1980           Freda Jeli Nells
1980-1981           Sandra Eriacho
1981-1982           Dolly Manson Montoya
1982-1983           Sunny Dooley
1983-1984           Shirley Paulson
1984-1985           Lorene Lewis
1985-1986           Audra Arviso
1986-1987           Henrietta Jake
1987-1988           Wena Jesus
1988-1989           Sophina Shorty Brown
1989-1990           Geraldine Gamble
1990-1991           Jennifer Jackson Wheeler
1991-1992           Sharon Watson Murray
1992-1993           Tina James Tafoya
1993-1994           Tara Tsosie
1994-1995           Karen Leuppe
1995-1996           Audra Etsitty Platero
1996-1997           Josephine Tracy
1997-1998           Radmilla Cody
1998-1999           Sevaleah Begay
1999-2000           Victoria Yazzie
2000-2001           Karletta Chief
2001-2002           Jolyana Chief
2002-2003           Shaunda Tsosie
2003-2004           Marla Billey

Miss Navajo Nation website

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