Miss Indian Arizona 2016 - 2017 Participants

Jaylene Marisa WoodMariah Jordan Sharpe - Colorado River Indian Tribes

Mariah Jordan Sharpe will represent the Colorado River Indian Tribes. Mariah is the daughter of Isaac Sharpe and Chaweka Fisher; she is 18 years of age and has two sisters.  Mariah graduated with honors from Parker High School this year. She was named Senior Girl Athlete of the Year for not just being an outstanding athlete, but being academically inclined and maintaining a 3.6 GPA throughout the year.

Her personal goal is to continue her education at Paradise Valley Community College and transfer to the University of Hawaii at Manoa.  Her area of study will be in the medical field. She was a recipient of a medical internship from the National Congress of Future Physicians and Medical Technologists this past summer and traveled to Ahmedabad Gujarat India.  She gained hands on experience in real life gross anatomy labs, operating rooms and medical treatment alongside physicians. During high school she won numerous awards such as Arizona Inter-Scholastic Athlete Scholar as an athlete excelling in volleyball, basketball and golf for four years; Principles Honor Roll for four years; serving on CRIT Youth Council three years a Co-President; Little Miss and Miss Colorado River Indian Tribes.  Mariah enjoys reading medical blogs and watching Gray’s Anatomy. She loves Italian and Mexican food, drinking coffee, spending long hot days at the Colorado River with her dog Huggs. Her favorite pastime is learning her traditions and culture and she wants to become fluent in the Chemehuevi and Mohave language.

If selected as Miss Indian Arizona she plans to continue to promote connecting elders with our youth to preserve cultural understanding and awareness. “Our elders are “Living Treasures”, and I would love the chance to bring attention to how much we can learn from them, how we can grow from them, and how we should treasurer them.”

Jaylene Marisa WoodAnissa Angel Garcia – Gila River Indian Community

Anissa Angel Garcia is 21 years old, Akimel O’odham of the Gila River Indian Community. Daughter of Darren Pedro-Martinez and Mario Garcia, and has three brothers and one sister. Graduate of Vechij Himdag MashchamakuD in 2015 and attending Central Arizona College for her Associate of Arts and then continuing her education through a University.

Anissa's term recently ended interning as the first youth for the Gila River Indian Community Utility Authority board. She also had the honor of being asked to display her photography in the Huhugam Heritage Center May - August 2016. Anissa is a former member of the Akimel O’odham/Pee-Posh Youth Council 2012-2015 and former Miss Gila River Second Attendant 2014-2015. Anissa is also a basket dancer who dances with Keli Akimel Hua Modk Cudkdam and plays Toka (women's traditional game) with Onk Akimel Sivliki.

More hobbies include; photography, running, learning the O'odham him:dag (way of life), singing (traditionally and non), sewing, collecting mugs wherever I travel, traveling and meeting new people.

Karlette A. Miguel, Tohono O’odham NationShaandiin Paul Parrish – Navajo Tribe

Shaandiin Paul Parris hails from the Navajo Tribe.  She is 22 years old and is the daughter of Shelly Parrish and Timothy Begay and she has one brother and one sister. She is attending Arizona State University and plans to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Policy and Political Science. Her work experience includes serving as a Senate Page at the Arizona State Senate; other experience Dine Youth Employment, Iteachaz Internship and Barrett Summer Scholars. Honors include Gates Millennium Scholarship, Clinton Global Initiative University, Udall Foundation Scholarship and Phoenix Indian Center American Indian Excellence in Leadership. She serves on the ASU American Indian Council and is a past Miss Indian Arizona 2nd Attendant.

Although she was born and raised on the Navajo Reservation she is not fluent in the Navajo language.  To be fluent is her greatest educational and personal goal. She competes in pageants to improve her public speaking abilities, to practice the Navajo language and to learn more about her culture.  In her spare time, she is an amateur photographer and enjoys watching DYI and completing projects, trying new things, movies, traveling, baking, gardening, listening to stories from her grandparents and being on the reservation with family.

If selected as Miss Indian Arizona she wants to encourage Native American youth of Arizona to DREAM BIG. “I believe that the power of change lies within the hands of the current generation’s youth. Children have imaginations beyond belief and I know this creativity can help our Native American communities innovate new solutions to old problems. Everything starts with a small thought that might grow into a dream.  I think the youth just need encouragement to pursue their dreams by setting goals.  I wouldn’t be where I am today without the people that believed in me.

Lisa Hohokimal HendricksJuanita Lisa Rose Stanley – San Carlos Apache Tribe

Juanita Lisa Rose Stanley represents the San Carlos Apache Tribe.  Juanita is 18 years of age and the daughter of Muriel Stanley and Antonio Lazada and she has two sisters. She is a 2016 graduate of Fort Thomas High School. Over the past four years of school she has received many awards and recognition; four years of cheerleading achievement; four years of Future Leaders of America Awards; served   as Miss Fort Thomas, Miss Mt. Turnbull, and Miss San Carlos; American Legion Auxiliary Girls State Award; a recipient of US Congress Recognition of Outstanding Community Service, University of Arizona International Service Community Award, Gila Institute for Technology Career & Technical Education Award.

Her personal and educational goals include continuing her higher education once she has completed four years of service to the United States Army.  Her personal goals are to continue living a healthy life by eating healthy, daily exercise and most importantly staying drug and alcohol free. Juanita interests and hobbies consist of reading books, surfing the internet, exercising daily by running and walking.  She loves to cook and enjoy spending time with her family especially her sisters.

If selected as Miss Indian Arizona she plans to promote anti-bulling and the effects of bullying.

Martha Ludlow MartinezMorgan Angel Smith – San Carlos Apache Tribe

Morgan Angel Smith will be participating as an at large representative from the San Carlos Apache Tribe. Morgan is 19 years of age and is the daughter of Geniece and Jimmy Smith and she has one brother and two sisters. She is attending Northland Pioneer College and is seeking an Associate’s Degree in Paramedicine and Nursing. Oher training includes the Child Development Associate and Certified Nursing Assistant Program.  She is presently employed at the Hawley Cake Café in Whiteriver, Arizona.  Her personal goals are to be healthy, fit and organized.

Morgan’s educational goals are to become a EMT, then a paramedic while working to complete the prerequisite for the Nursing Program. After they are completed she plans to become a registered Nurse then a BSN.  After completion of her Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing she wants to become a Physician’s Assistant, then one day hopefully a Surgeon. She was elected White Mountain Apache Tribal Youth Council Vice-President. For her interests and hobbies, she loves to read, bead, play drums, cook and play softball.

If selected as Miss Indian Arizona, her platform would be to encourage teens not to do drugs and alcohol.

Miriam April MayHarriet Lynn Chewing – Tohono O'odham Nation

Harriet Lynn Chewing is the 22-year-old daughter of Flora and Harry Chewing and she has two brothers and one sisters. Harriet is representing the Tohono O’odham Nation. She graduated from Casa Grande Union High School in 2012. During her Freshman and Sophomore year she received a Band Award for her participation in the Casa Grande Union High School concert and marching band. Her educational goals are to finish her Associates Degree and further plans to pursue a Bachelor’s of Science in the field of Nursing hopefully at the University of Arizona.

She is presently employed at Coach Outlet as a Cashier in Chandler, Arizona. She also received many awards and recognition for her participation in the Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps including the Marine Corps Association Outstanding Unit Award; American Legion Medal; American Veterans Medal; Scottish Rite JROTC Medal; Best Drill Cadet Award; Distinguished Conduct Award; Color Guard Award Recruiting Award.  Her interests and hobbies are running; “I enjoy paths that I run along the mountains near my home.  I enjoy learning new songs on my flute that I used when I was in the marching band in high school.

If selected as Miss Indian Arizona I plan to promote a healthy lifestyle among the state of Arizona, especially in our children.  I hope to continue to work with my District in putting together another fun run and another color run that I started as my year as Miss Tohono O’odham Nation 1st Attendant.

Learn more about the Tohono O'odham Nation

Shandiin Parrish

Mykhal Mendoza - White Mountain Apache Tribe

Mykhal Mendoza hails from the White Mountain Apache Tribe and is 24 years of age.  She is the daughter of Melissa and Donminic Bonney and has two brothers. She holds two Bachelor’s degrees from Arizona State University and is presently attending Abilene Christian University for a Master’s Degree in Higher Education. She is presently employed as a Program Coordinator at Playworks (Americorps) in Phoenix, Arizona.

Her educational goal is to graduate with her Masters of education in Higher Education with a concentration in enrollment management then proceed to pursue a PHD in Education Policy and Evaluation specializing in American Indian education at Arizona State University. Her personal goal is to become more active in her everyday life and to cook healthy foods. Travel to 25 locations that she has never visited.  Read all the books she hasn’t read that are on her shelf. To build her own sustainable home when she is older. Awards and special recognition include First Generation graduate of Arizona State University earning two Bachelor’s degrees in 2015; Miss Gallup Inter-Tribal Ceremonial Queen 2014-15; Miss Indian Arizona State University 2011-12; Bill and Melanie Gates Millennium Scholar Class of 2010.  Mykhal is an avid book reader mainly of young adult romantic novels.

She loves spending time with her cat Mr. Chow who loves to play fetch.  She enjoys going to concerts so much she have gone by herself, going to the movies with her auntie is the best especially the popcorn. Mykhal has been journaling since she was a kid, her favorite part about summer is going to sunrise dances, monsoon season is her favorite season and every chance she can be with her family.

If selected as Miss Indian Arizona, her platform will be “E.A.R.T.H. which stands for 5 things that make her who she is and what she hopes to inspire E, stands for education; A, active; R, reading; T, traditions; H, home. Stating, “I am EARTH”.   

© 2016 Miss Indian Arizona