2016 Ms. Wheelchair Washington

2016 Ms. Wheelchair Washington
Nicole Martini

Ms. Wheelchair Washington loves her TiLite Wheelchair

When I think about daily living with a disability and using a wheelchair, I have a basic philosophy: The person comes before a disability. TiLite produces a line of wheelchairs with a customized flair that highlights the person’s unique needs while considering specific tastes and abilities.

As the newly crowned Ms. Wheelchair Washington 2009, I plan to share my positive experience with TiLite products as I travel to various events throughout my community; promoting TiLite’s quality and excellence to other wheelchair users.

I have been a TiLite customer for nearly nine years. I consider several factors when selecting a chair, some of which go beyond the chair itself. I have always been thoroughly impressed with TiLite’s use of positive, active people in their advertising campaigns. TiLite ads consistently include role models with active and fulfilling lives. TiLite not only produces an amazing product but encourages an active lifestyle as well. It is incredible to see people with disabilities using wheelchairs in every facet of the community, enjoying life to the fullest.

"I love my TiLite YR because its function and design put the person first, its style and tailored fit draw attention to the individual; not the wheelchair. TiLite magnificently blends necessity, durability and artistry into a wheelchair unlike any other wheelchair I have owned in the past. I am and always will be a loyal TiLite customer!"

Jannette is featured in Provail's March Newsletter

Provail has been a big supporter of the Ms. Wheelchair Washington Program the past few years, and we want to thank them for their support and what they do for the disability community.

To learn more about Provail organization or to sign up for their newsletter, visit their website at www.provail.org

Jannette attends "Say Hey" Event - March 25th Tacoma, WA

On March 25th, Jannette, Ms. Wheelchair Washington attented an event in Tacoma, WA called: "Say Hey". This event is to celebrate and offer networking opportunties for people with disabilities, business leaders, community organizations and goverment officials. This event welcomes job seekers and newly hired individuals with disabilities to the community.

Jannette says, " I was honored to attend this event to get a chance to get out in my community and meet local people with disabilities, business leaders, organizations, and goverment officials. It is great this event is being held to promote employment for people with disabilities. Thank you to the sponsors for holding such an important event!"

This event is sponsored by:

1) Division of Vocational Rehabilitation

Website: www.dshs.wa.gov/dvr

2) The Washington State Business Leadership Network

3) Goodwill "Because jobs change lives"
Website: www.tacomagoodwill.org
Above in the Photo Is Janette (left) Middle, Karen Walters, of the WSBLN (A Sponsor of "Say Hey" & Dan Eberle, Career Specialist at Bates Tech College.

Article about Jannette in Northwest Guardian

Read the article that was published about Jannette in the Northwest Guardian, the official Newspaper of Fort Lewis, WA. Fort Lewis employee wins wheelchair crown: http://www.nwguardian.com/103/story/4729.html

2009 Ms. Wheelchair Washington 1st Runner-Up Mindy Lindstrom

Mindy Lindstrom- 1st Runner Up Mindy Lindstrom, who has congenital absence of the lower limbs, is from Seattle, WA. She describes herself as joyful, agile, able, concerned and inquisitive. Her platform is called The Ableution, which she describes as a disability revolution, a critical evolution and savvy shift of a collective community. The ableution will create a space to tell stories and share experiences of critical and often overlooked human experience. If she becomes the next Ms. Wheelchair Washington, she says she would work in the schools and education arenas of my local community in order to facilitate real conversation about the experiences of disability, different bodied life, and wheelchairs!

2009 Ms. Wheelchair Washington Contestants - Jacqueline Adams and Krystal Monteros

Jacqueline Adams, who become a paraplegic from a car crash is from Omak, WA. She describes herself proactive, positive, professional, compassionate, and courageous. Her platform is called “Changing the World One Child at a Time.” Since she has been a first grade teacher for over ten years, she wants to to be a positive role model to children and continue to teach them to open their minds and eyes to an awareness and acceptance beyond most adults. She wants to show families that as an educator she can enrich many children’s lives through education and her personal life experience. One day she would also like to write a book about her life story, so she can help others push themselves through life’s many challenges, to see that everyone deserves success and happiness – no matter what happens in their life.

Krystal Monteros, who has Spina Bifida is from Tacoma, WA. She describes herself as successful, determined, enthusiastic, compassionate, and self-motivated. Her platform is called KidsAbility and if she becomes Ms. Wheelchair Washington, she wants to spend time educating kids with disabilities in Washington State to reach their best quality life. As a child who had a different type of childhood due to her disability, Krystal often felt isolated from her classmates. She feels it is important for children with disabilities to have role models at a young age. She wants to be a mentor to children so they all know that while they might be different, they also have many options to do everything they want in life.

Farewell letter from the 2008 Ms. Wheelchair Washington, Meg Paulsen

I can’t believe the year passed so quickly – it’s really true that time flies when you’re having fun! I am excited to be involved in the upcoming pageant and know that whoever is crowned is in for an experience of a lifetime. Thank you to all of the people who supported me both financially and emotionally and I look forward to offering the same support to the 2009 Ms. Wheelchair Washington. It was such an exciting year for me! Once crowned in March I had no idea what wonderful opportunities this title would open up for me. At work my diversity efforts expanded to such an extent that I was able to promote the organizations I volunteered with to an even greater level of recognition. My title afforded me the opportunity to go to Washington DC to represent Washington’s 60,000 people with disabilities as I met with senators and representatives to give a face to my community and support improvements to a Medicare program.

Once at the national pageant in July, I met 26 truly beautiful women who happen to be wheelchair users. I met women who were pre-law, pre-med and non-profit business owners - their efforts around advocacy and the betterment of the world were inspiring. I made fast friends with Ms. Texas who ended up wearing the Ms. Wheelchair America sash and crown home and will be visiting her in Houston in April. Before I even had considered being a nominee for the Ms. Wheelchair Washington I had enrolled at DeVry University to complete my degree in Human Resources Management. I really didn’t expect to win the crown, but when I did I postponed my enrollment. Because of my involvement with the Ms. Wheelchair WA program, I was recognized and awarded a scholarship through the P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization) and reenrolled in school in September so one of my major goals is being accomplished.

Again, I want to recognize and appreciate those who have supported me in my title – I could not have done this without the experience and generosity Tammy Wilber offers in her role as the state coordinator for the MWW program. I look forward to being involved with this program for years to come.

Sincerely, Meg Paulsen, Ms. Wheelchair Washington 2008http://us.mc529.mail.yahoo.com/mc/compose?to=megpaulsen@hotmail.com

Testimonial about the pageant from Sigrid Laegreid, Ms Wheelchair Washington

“Being apart of the Ms. Wheelchair America Program, as the 2007 Ms. Wheelchair Washington has been a year that I will never forget. Not only was it an honor to be able to be a representative for people with disabilities, but I also was able to educate people across Washington state about various disability issues. I hope that I was able to leave a lasting impression on all the people I met this past year, and opened their eyes to look past someone’s disability and see them for the person that they truly are. It was for me one of the best experiences ever.” Sigrid Laegreid, Ms Wheelchair Washington 2007

Testimonial about pageant from Sawnie J. Geer, Contestant in the Ms. Wheelchair Washington Pageant 2008

“I was one of 3 contestants in the 2008 Ms. Wheelchair Washington Pageant. Even though it was a small competition, it was a bit challenging due to the fact I had never done anything like it before. But everyone involved, including the "spectators" made it comfortable and relaxing. We all had a lot of fun. We met new people just like us in the sense we all have mobility issues and even though it may have been for different reasons, we all felt "the same" for a while. It was nice. The pageant itself was not hard at all. You were asked to go in and answer a few general questions to get to know you better, then you went out and told the spectators pretty much the same things and answered a few of their questions. I found it to be simple and straight forward. The winner, Meg Paulson, was a great choice. I was glad to have met her and all the others there that day. Being a part of the Ms. Wheelchair Washington Pageant was a wonderful experience I will never forget.” ~ Sawnie J. Geer, 2008 Ms. Wheelchair Washington Contestant