The Miss Silicon Valley 2016 scholarship competition took place on Jan. 9 at the Mission City Center for Performing Arts, shortly after the Miss Santa Clara and Miss Santa Clara’s Outstanding Teen competition ended. Sharing the stage with other Silicon Valley women, some contestants from the Miss Santa Clara competition bravely took the stage in the Miss Silicon Valley competition for their second competition in less than 24 hours. The title of Miss Silicon Valley 2016 went to Kim Huynh, 23, a graduate of Stanford University and a resident of Palo Alto.
“It’s a great honor, one I didn’t expect but one that I’m thrilled to have received,” says Huynh, glowing with joy after her crowning.
Huynh also won the interview and talent awards. The interview took place privately among the judges before the stage competition. During the talent segment, Huynh cheerfully sang “Frim Fram Sauce” while playing the piano.
“[While performing my talent], I had to think of what my voice, my left hand, my right hand and my foot on the pedal were doing,” Huynh says. “My interview was the easy part. I listened to the NPR Morning Edition every day for the last year to keep up with current events. I’ve had former pageant experience, which helps.”
Huynh’s platform is “Closing the Achievement Gap Through Promoting Early Childhood Literacy.”
“I’ve been working with this organization called 10 Books a Home to help prepare children from low-income communities for kindergarten,” she says. “I have gone into homes to work with learners as a volunteer. I plan to visit schools and workplaces to encourage students and adults to volunteer to teach others to read.”
Other highlights of the evening included Allie McKoy’s spoken word presentation about her journey to appreciating herself as a beautiful African American woman, Amia Nash’s poetic delivery of the knowledge she’d want to impart to her daughter and Jaskiran Waraich’s hip-shaking belly dance.
During the evening, Stephanie Quintal, executive director of the Miss Santa Clara Organization, thanked the event sponsors, as the organization was able to award $14,150 in scholarships this year. Quintal also recognized Miss Silicon Valley 2015 Melissa Bowling and Miss Santa Clara 2015 Jessa Carmack by presenting crystal trophies to both women to replace certificates for a non-finalist talent award and a preliminary swimsuit award and Top 10 placement award, respectively, from the Miss California competition last summer. Also participating in the most recent Miss California competition were Miss Santa Clara’s Outstanding Teen 2015 Caroline Monahan and Miss Silicon Valley’s Outstanding Teen 2015 Emily Sanchez.
Miss Silicon Valley 2016, Kim Huynh, $2,500
1st runner up, Marielle L’Heureux, $550
2nd runner up, Jaskiran Waraich, $450
3rd runner up, Amia Nash, $350
4th runner up, Trisha Bantigue, $250
Interview, Kim Huynh, $100
Talent, Kim Huynh, $100
6 non-finalists, Allie McKoy, Evangelea DiCicco, Faithe Pearson, Jaskiran Waraich, Reina Stevens, Sydney Johnson, $1,200
Miss Congeniality, Amia Nash, $100
Spirit of Competition, Evangelea Dicicco, $100
Facebook Fan Favorite, Jaskiran Waraich, $50
Total prizes: $5,750