Miss Wisconsin Rapids Scholarship Organization welcomes new leadership
For the City Times
WISCONSIN RAPIDS – The Miss Wisconsin Rapids Scholarship Organization is welcoming new leadership for the 2020 competition.
For the past eight years, Joanne Wayne, has served as co-executive director, most recently alongside Katie (Williams) Tomsyck.
“It’s not often that you get to change people’s lives. Directing the Miss Wisconsin Rapids program has been my opportunity to change the lives of young women in our community. Offering them a chance to grow their speaking skills, develop their personal strengths and achieve more, through scholarships, has been rewarding. The best part has been the close relationships I have developed with these young women and our incredible team of volunteers,” said Wayne.
While Wayne thoroughly enjoyed serving the community and helping young women grow, both personally and professionally, she feels this is the right time to step down as new leadership is ready to take the reins.
Tomsyck, who made a move to California last year, will stay involved by transitioning to the board president, which she is able to do from her new location.
“It has been an honor to lead such an empowering organization. I cherish the relationships that I’ve made with both the young ladies who entered our program and our incredible band of volunteers. I’m excited to see what our new team has in store for the future and I’m confident the organization is in good hands,” expressed Tomsyck.
Sisters, Morgan (Vanderhei) Simon and Tianna Vanderhei – both with personal ties to the program –will step in and serve as co-executive directors; effective the day after Miss Wisconsin 2020, which is set to take place June 20 at Alberta Kimball Auditorium in Oshkosh.
Simon first competed in the fall of 2007 as a senior at Lincoln High School, vying for the title four times before winning the Miss Wisconsin Rapids title in 2014.
“It was an honor to represent my hometown, but this organization has had my heart since long before I was crowned. The local programs are the backbone of this organization, and our local program and all its dedicated volunteers have helped shape me into the woman I am today, by providing me with personal and professional growth opportunities,” she said.
During her year of service, Simon made more than 70 appearances and raised more than $3,600 for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals; she also earned over $4,000 in scholarship dollars over the years.
Tianna Vanderhei, Morgan’s younger sister, began her involvement with the program when she was a senior at Lincoln High School. She went on to compete in 11 local competitions, holding six titles over an eight-year journey, which culminated with her serving as Miss Wisconsin 2018.
While serving the state, Vanderhei traveled more than 30,000 miles, placed as a Top 12 Semi-Finalist at Miss America, received the first Preliminary On-Stage Question/Interview Award at Miss America 2019, and earned more than $20,000 in scholarship dollars to help fund her higher education.
“As I approach the 10 year mark of my involvement with MAO, I cannot think of a better way to show appreciation for the scholarships, speaking skills and networking opportunities this program has provided me with than to transition into a leadership role and help other women garner those same experiences,” expressed Vanderhei.
The 2020 Miss Wisconsin Rapids Scholarship Competition will take place on Nov. 7 at the Performing Arts Center in Wisconsin Rapids. Two informational meetings will take place on April 29 by video call and May 11, location TBA, at 6 p.m.
At these meetings, women ages 17-25 can learn more about the program.
The 2020-21 Miss Wisconsin Rapids Scholarship Organization Board of Directors includes: Katie Tomsyck, president; Nikki Calteux, vice president ; Meg Kumm, treasurer and workshop coordinator; Hannah Ashbeck, volunteer and interview advisor; Kelli Quinnell, show director; Amy Kubisiak, secretary and fundraiser lead; Lindsay Reimer, Little Miss program coordinator; Simon, board member and booking manager; Vanderhei, board member and social media coordinator; Patti Kumm, board member; Wayne, board member.