Virginia teen participating in national scholarship program

Mobile, Ala. – Today marks the start of competition for Addison Walker, the Lynchburg teen competing in the 54th Distinguished Young Women National Finals. Walker, along with 49 other state representatives, has been in Mobile, Ala. for the past two weeks participating in community activities and preparing for the national scholarship competition.

The program’s evaluation process includes scholastics (20%), interview (25%), fitness (15%), talent (25%) and self-expression (15%). During the preliminary competition today and tomorrow, each participant will compete in the categories of self-expression, fitness and talent. Walker has completed an individual interview with a panel of five judges and her scholastic performance has been scored through an evaluation process of her high school academic record and standardized test scores.

On Saturday, June 25, ten finalists will be selected from the group of 50 young women and will compete for the opportunity to represent the program as the Distinguished Young Woman of America for 2011. In addition, the newly selected national representative will receive a $40,000 cash scholarship.

“The mission of Distinguished Young Women is to provide a life-enhancing experience for our participants that culminates in a celebratory showcase of their accomplishments,” said Becky Jo Peterson, executive director of Distinguished Young Women. “The on-stage categories of fitness, self-expression, and talent show that these young women have made a commitment to be healthy, that they are able to express their thoughts and opinions in a cogent and effective way, and that they have an appreciation for the arts that they demonstrate through a performing talent.”

For her talent presentation, Walker will sing I Was Here by Lady Antebellum.

To view the live webcast of the Distinguished Young Women National Finals, visit on Saturday, June 25 at 7 p.m. CST.

To see photos of participants from the past two weeks, visit

About Distinguished Young Women

Founded in 1958 in Mobile, Alabama, Distinguished Young Women, is the largest and oldest national scholarship program for high school girls. During its 54 years of operation, the program has provided life-changing experiences for more than 700,000 young women. Last year Distinguished Young Women provided more than $63 million in cash and college scholarship opportunities to program participants at the local, state and national level.

The mission of Distinguished Young Women is to positively impact the lives of young women by providing a transformative experience that promotes and rewards scholarship, leadership and talent. National sponsors include the City of Mobile, Mobile County, Eastern Shore Toyota, Encore Rehabilitation, Mobile Gas: A Sempra Company, Alabama Power Foundation, Regions Bank and Master Boat Builders.

For more information about Distinguished Young Women, contact Stephanie Bradford (251-622-5335, or visit
- From a release

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