The Pasadena Tournament of Roses chose Erika Karen Winter, a 17-year old senior at Flintridge Preparatory School as its 98th Rose Queen on Thursday, October 22 at the Pasadena Convention Center.
Completing the 2016 Royal Court are: Rose Princesses Bryce Marie Bakewell, Flintridge Sacerd Heart Academy; Natalie Breanne Hernandez-Barber, Alverno High School; Rachelle Chacal Renee Liu, San Marino High School; Donaly Elizabeth Marquez, Blair High School; Regina Marché Pullens, Maranatha High School; and Sarah Sumiko Shaklan, La Canada High School.
Chosen from over 900 young ladies and 39 finalists, princesses for the Royal Court were selected based on academic achievement, community service, and public speaking ability. The Royal Court will act as ambassadors for the Tournament of Roses and the Pasadena community at large making up to 100 community and media appearances.
This year’s Royal Court has a special connection to the Los Angeles Sentinel. Rose Princess Bryce Marie Bakewell is the daughter of the Executive Editor of the Sentinel, Danny Bakewell, Jr., and Tana Bakewell. “We are extremely proud of Bryce. She is so excited because all the girls are friends and that makes it so nice for them,” said Bryce’s mother, Ms. Tana Bakewell. “As a father, what gives me the greatest joy is to see my children happy, and Bryce is so happy so naturally I am filled with joy and tremendous pride,” said Bryce’s father, Danny Bakewell, Jr.
Princess Bryce is also the granddaughter of Chairman and CEO/Executive Publisher of the Los Angeles Sentinel, Danny Bakewell, Sr., and Mrs. Aline Bakewell. “Bryce is a very loving granddaughter as all my granddaughters are. It’s a wonderful opportunity for Bryce. There’s so much she will learn and take away from this experience for the rest of her life so I’m really happy for her.” “Pasadena is community that we are committed too, so it’s really a tremendous honor,” Bryce’s grandmother, Mrs. Aline Bakewell said.
Rose Princess Bryce, 17, resides in Pasadena and is a senior at Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy. She is the president of the Black Student Union and hopes to become a criminal justice attorney. Princess Bryce enjoys yoga, volunteer work, and traveling. She has three siblings, Taelor, Danny III, and Devyn.
When asked to describe her experience as a princess on the Royal Court thus far, Princess Bryce said, “I’m having the best time of my life. It is a lot of work but a labor of love. Being able to go into the community with my sisters and bring joy to the others, is amazing.” “I’m excited that I get to share this experience with Princess Regina, (Regina Marché Pullens), one of my closest friends. “For both of us to make it onto the court is really special. We never imagined that the two of us would be doing this together. Right before they announced the princesses, Regina said, ‘if you make it, I make it,’ and we did.”
Princess Regina, 17, is a senior at Maranatha High School and lives in Altadena. She is the daughter of Reginald and Renita Pullens. “To be a princess on the Rose Court means I get to honor my community and give back and I get to be a role model for young girls. It’s really such an honorable experience,” Princess Regina said. She has three siblings: Teneka, Reece, and Reid. Both princesses laughed when asked about perfecting the queenly wave saying, “it was hard at first but we have down and we will be ready.”
Sentinel Chairman and CEO Danny Bakewell Sr., acknowledge the specialness of this day for his granddaughter, his family, and the African American community at large. “This is Bryce’s day, her moment. Bryce has a great sense of self. She is very confident, young Black woman. It makes our heart smile to see how well she represents our family, our people, and young women,” Bakewell Sr., said. “I have a long history in Pasadena and with the Tournament of Roses. As a social justice activist, it was always my desire that people be given opportunities at all levels. It’s great to see the diversity that is represented on this Rose Court, it’s really gratifying. A number of people have said to me that they are inspired by the changes that the Tournament has made through the years. The Tournament of Roses does a great job and I hope they continue to move the organization forward.”
To read the full article, pick up the LA Sentinel on Thursday, October 29, 2016. For more information on the 127th Rose Parade presented by Honda and the 102nd Rose Bowl game presented by Northwestern Mutual, visit www.tournamentofroses.com.