Mount Sterling native to compete for Miss Illinois title June 11-15 in Marion

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Nicole Taylor is crowned as Miss Quincy by predecessor Shelby Rose on Jan. 6. | MRN FIle Photo

QUINCY — Miss Quincy Nicole Taylor will compete for the title of Miss Illinois during the Miss Illinois Pageant on June 11-15 in Marion, Illinois. The competition comprises talent, interviews, evening gowns, on-stage questions and health and fitness. 

Taylor, 19, lives in Mount Sterling. She is a daughter of Jon Taylor and Stacey Liggett. For the talent competition at Miss Illinois, Taylor will perform a musical theatre dance to “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend.” Her community service initiative is “Pretty Precision: Empowerment and Education for Women in the Outdoors.”

“As Miss Illinois, I would be able to take my community service initiative to a much larger scale,” Taylor said in a press release. “Serving as the role model I never had, by showing young girls that they can be both feminine and an outdoor woman, is my ultimate life goal. I know having the state title would allow me to impact more lives across Illinois.”

Taylor graduated from John Wood Community College last month with an associate’s degree in marketing. She was recently appointed assistant director of Gardner Camp, a nonprofit organization in Hull that promotes outdoor recreational and educational activities with a primary focus on youth programs. Taylor has had several professional modeling opportunities in Atlanta and Chicago during the last several months. She says she owes her recent success to the Miss Quincy Scholarship Program.

“I knew I wanted to make my year as Miss Quincy the most fulfilling and impactful year possible,” Taylor said. “I’ve driven 35,000 miles, visited 10 states and have made almost 75 appearances in the short five months since being crowned Miss Quincy. I am already doing the job of Miss Illinois at the local level. I have fostered national and state partnerships, hosted events relevant to my community service initiative, and participated in a multi-county speaking and school presentation tour. Because of these experiences and my drive and passion, I am well-prepared for the role of Miss Illinois.” 

The winner of Miss Illinois will be announced Saturday, June 15, during the final night of competition. Miss Illinois will make public appearances throughout the state, serve as an advocate for her community service initiative and compete for the title of Miss America early next year.

“I am anticipating my interview with the judges,” Taylor said. “I love educating individuals about the benefits of the outdoors, and the interview room is the best place to do that. Successful titleholders in the Miss America Organization have lives, stories, ambitions and passions that carry them to the crown. Their lives are not defined by pageantry, yet pageantry adds skills to their lives to help them succeed.”

Alexis Lucie is crowned Miss Quincy Teen on Jan. 6. | MRN FIle Photo

Miss Quincy’s Teen Alexis Lucie also will compete in Marion for the title of Miss Illinois Teen.

Lucie, 17, is a daughter of Chuck and Tammy Lucie of Basco. For her talent, she will perform a cardio exercise routine to “Eye of the Tiger.” Lucie’s community service initiative is “4H for Life.”

“I strive to be Miss Illinois’ Teen so that I can inform people statewide about the importance of 4H,” Lucie said. “With the title, I will be able to connect with people all over the state and get more children involved in this wonderful program.”

Lucie will be a freshman at Truman State University this fall and plans to major in biology. She recently graduated as valedictorian from Warsaw High School and with her associate’s degree from Carl Sandburg College, where she earned high honors. 

The winner of Miss Illinois’ Teen will be selected the night of June 14. She will go on to compete for the title of Miss America’s Teen, which will be held in conjunction with Miss America.

“I’m most excited to connect with the judges in the interview portion of the competition,” Lucie said. “I am excited to share my thoughts and passions about 4H for Life as well as inform the judges about it. I continue to be extremely involved in my 4H club and my county 4H federation. I stay up to date on all 4H news so I am knowledgeable and can answer any questions I will be asked. I have enjoyed learning about different 4H statistics throughout the state so I’m aware of every area I would potentially serve as Miss Illinois Teen.”

Taylor and Lucie were crowned Miss Quincy and Miss Quincy’s Teen on Jan. 6 at Quincy Community Theatre.

For more information on the Miss Illinois Competition, visit www.missillinois.org.

The Miss Quincy Scholarship Program is an official local preliminary to Miss America, one of the nation’s leading achievement programs and the largest source of scholarships for women in the United States. A tradition since 1948, the mission of Miss Quincy is to empower young women by providing educational scholarships and life-changing opportunities for personal and professional growth.

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