(Updated) Cullman’s Phyllis Hain crowned 2019 Ms. Senior Alabama

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Phyllis Hain, right, was crowned 2019 Ms. Senior Alabama in Birmingham Saturday night. (Photo courtesy of Angie Carter)

CULLMAN, Ala. – Cullman’s Phyllis Hain, the reigning Ms. Senior Cullman County, Saturday night was crowned 2019 Ms. Senior Alabama. The pageant took place at Oak Mountain High School in Birmingham.

Hain was crowned by Donna Harris, 2018 Ms. Senior Alabama, who was also 2018 Ms. Senior Cullman County.

Hain competed with 15 other contestants from around the state. The women were judged on interviews, their philosophy of life, talent, poise, grace and evening gowns.

Said Hain, “It was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed meeting the other contestants and their families.”

Hain, a published author and artist, focused on those abilities in the talent portion of the pageant. She performed a dramatic reading from her autobiography “Diamond in the Dark,” while using three pieces of her artwork as a backdrop. She chose pieces from three different mediums: pencil, watercolors and oils.

Hain said she made a few adjustments to her wardrobe selections in preparation for the state pageant, sharing, “I went with a French painter theme.”

Hain said she particularly enjoyed the fellowship with the other contestants prior to the pageant, saying, “We were all in the same hotel, and the hotel had a hospitality room for everyone to enjoy. We got to know each other a lot better before the pageant on Saturday. We met each other’s spouses, children and grandchildren. It was just wonderful. The depth of the competition is not just beauty. There are mothers, grandmothers, professional women and strong, intelligent women from all walks of life. I am honored to have been a part of it. “

Many of Hain’s friends and family members made the trip Saturday to support her. Her church’s Sunday school group, as well as her husband, daughter and many others cheered from the audience. One of Hain’s biggest supporters was Harris.

Hain said, “If it weren’t for the Ms. Senior Cullman (County) pageant, I wouldn’t know Donna. She and I have become such close friends and I feel so blessed. She is so amazing and has been a great supporter and friend.”

Hain laughed as she spoke of her husband’s reaction to the win.

“He was about to burst. He has such a great sense of humor and said he is now the Mr. Ms. Senior Alabama and wants his own sash. Of course, our daughter was very excited, too.”

Hain will now begin the next step, which is applying for the Ms. Senior USA pageant, which will be held in 2020. She also wants to use her platform to promote victim advocacy, particularly to train advocates and raise awareness of senior and elder abuse.

Said Hain, “It’s important to make sure our seniors, who have spent their lives serving and taking care of others, are now being (cared for) as they should. Time spent with a senior is the greatest gift.”

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Christy Perry

christy@cullmantribune.com