When Chelsi Phillips was crowned Minico High School’s Homecoming Queen last fall, she never dreamed it would lead her to win Idaho’s Homecoming Queen Competition allowing her the privilege to compete for “America’s Homecoming Queen” in Anaheim California this month. Career minded, Chelsi sees it as an opportunity to further her education and develop leadership skills that will benefit southern Idaho’s communities.

Photo © Jason LugoThe National Homecoming Queen Competition is a nonprofit organization that is held by “invitation only”, unlike most competitions. The 30 year old program is scholarship based promoting the “All American Girl” who wants a career.  Winners are awarded tuition scholarships to the school of their choice. Where most contestants are judged on beauty and talent, this competition is based primarily on community service, leadership and education.

Well qualified, Chelsi has been involved in volunteer coaching for various city league youth basketball teams. She has also chaired the Random Hats of Kindness, Kidney Transplant Fundraiser and Gift of Green, all charitable organizations. In addition to being active in basketball, tennis and cross-country, Chelsi is also musically talented in voice and piano.

Several weeks after submitting her qualification for the state competition she received word she had been selected as Idaho’s newest Homecoming Queen for 2011 out of 206 entries making her the first young woman to win such an award in Southern Idaho.

Chelsi, the daughter of Boyd and Jean Phillips of Rupert, credits her parents and leaders for teaching her the importance of work and community service. Working with her siblings and parents in a family owned business, Chelsi learned at a young age the importance of working with people and getting things done.

Chelsi is now vying for the title of America’s National Homecoming Queen with 49 other young women from each state in the nation. The winner will be announced during the “Liberty Bowl” in Memphis Tennessee, December 31, 2011, one of the most well known and viewed College Bowl games in America.

This national search for the All American girl requires each participant from fifty states to go before a panel of judges for a personal interview as well as an evening gown demonstration and written essay. Chelsi will be required to bring 60 “Gifts from Idaho”, items that represent the state she is from, for example; key chains, pins, hats, t-shirts and mugs with the state’s logo, rocks, etc.

To help her represent Idaho, Chelsi is also looking for sponsors that are willing to promote leadership and community service. If you are interested in sponsoring or donating a “Gift from Idaho” you may contact Chelsi at phillips_chelsi@hotmail.com or 208-436-3229.

In addition, $1 votes from the public are taken to determine the “Favorite” Home Coming Queen, an additional section of the competition.  The more Idaho votes Chelsi gets, the more scholarship money is awarded her.  You may vote by going to www.americashomecomingqueen.com/index.cfm/state-queens/