Houston, Texas (March 14, 2014) The Board of Directors of the Ms. Wheelchair Texas Foundation seeks the next spokeswoman of the mobility-impaired community through its annual competition the Ms. Wheelchair Texas Gala. Ten contestants from across the state will compete for the honor of serving as Ms. Wheelchair Texas 2014. The winner’s responsibilities are varied and include speaking to legislators about the need for mobility access; visiting with school children to share their story of achievement and persistence, and competing in the national Ms. Wheelchair America Program in August 2014.
The program was held at the Marriott Westchase March 27-30, 2014. The event kicked off with a Welcoming Reception on Thursday evening. A full day leadership and advocacy conference will be held at TIRR Memorial Hermann on Friday. TIRR Memorial Hermann is a proud supporter of Ms. Wheelchair Texas and shares our passion for advocacy. Breakout sessions, interviews, and a spa treatment were held during the day Saturday. The Saturday evening Gala included a Little Miss Wheelchair Texas crowning ceremony, a 2-3 minute platform speech by each contestant, and an impromptu question from the panel of judges. The crown is awarded to the contestant who displays her passion for sharing the concerns and needs of people within the disabled community. The weekend concluded with a relaxed and affirming Queen’s breakfast for all the contestants, families and supporters.
2014 contestants included: Angel Arredondo of Mason; Pam Bullock of Spring; Dana Carpenter of Austin; Deborah Carpenter of Houston; Breanne Garza of Humble; Laura Halverson of Plano; Lacy Jones of Cooper; Jenna Luzzo of Austin; Meena Outlaw of Sugar Land; and Sorayda Rivera of Tyler.
Little Miss Wheelchair Texas is ten year old Chloe Short of Spring, Texas who is a 5th grader at Tom Cox Intermediate School.
The Ms. Wheelchair Texas Foundation, a not-for-profit 501© (3) organization strives to improve the lives of people with disabilities through its mission of advocacy and education.
Angel Arredondo, a native of Mason, Texas - was born with a rare condition called Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita (AMC). Angel has overcome many obstacles that most people would consider far too difficult, considering her limitations. People refer to her as “the girl in the wheelchair, that was never in one”.
Her hard work and dedication to succeed paid off. For six years Angel taught at the First United Methodist Church Steady Steps Daycare in Mason, then moved on to Mason Independent School District as a substitute teacher for nine years. She is married and also holds a title that is very dear to her heart – Mom.
After realizing the importance of sharing her story with others, Angel was determined to become an advocate, speaker for the AMC community, and for people living with all disabilities and becoming a Ms. Wheelchair Texas Ambassador. Her mission is to provide people with an example of courage in order to encourage them to embrace their own diversities so that they may succeed at anything they desire in life. She strives to educate the able body community as well, so that they can better understand the needs of the disability community and celebrate their differences and achievements. Angel is the founder of Project Hope Rolls. It was created to provide the basic daily essentials in care packages for physically challenged adults in the community to ensure them of their value to society with dignity and respect. She also became one of the AMC Member Spotlight writers for the Texas AMC Support Group website that features a special member’s triumphs, hobbies, and photos in a monthly article throughout the year.
Angel believes that “Everyone should appreciate what has been given to them, and to see their challenges as blessings.”