Meet Ms. Kyla Barnett, 2024 Junior Miss Juneteenth® America Participant


Kyla Barnett of Semmes, Alabama is a freshman at Mary G. Montgomery High School, where she serves in the Key Club. She is also a published author and is active in her church.

Let’s get to know Kyla!

Q: Why do you want to be crowned Junior Miss Juneteenth America or Teen Miss Juneteenth America?

A: Being crowned Junior Miss Juneteenth America would be a wonderful experience for me to show other young people who look like me that you are worthy of wonderful things with hard work and dedication. Sometimes, I find it difficult to communicate with other people in large settings. Even though I am shy I have a charitable heart and a personal drive to be successful. I want other young people to see that by overcoming your fears, being a good person, and working hard you can achieve wonderful things. Learning and educating others about our culture is especially important to me. I am excited about showing the world that my culture is rich. We are standing on the shoulders of our ancestors. It is our birthright to achieve excellence.

Q: How would you serve as a role model as the crowned Junior Miss Juneteenth America or Teen Miss Juneteenth America?

A: I would serve as a role model as the crowned the Junior Miss Juneteenth America by representing my city and my people by contributing to the organizations I mentioned and being active with people and events in my community. I would also be active in future and current Juneteenth events and activities and being a role model for the future participants of the young women who participate.

Q: What is the key to success?

A: To me the keys to success are spirituality, setting goals, patience, persistence, motivation, mental health, physical activity, and love from family and friends. Being successful is a lot to navigate as a young person. I am learning how to effectively navigate that space daily. I know that success means more than money or fame but success. Success for me currently has a lot to do with my dreams, aspirations, and the pursuit of something greater. I work daily on understanding that my potential is endless. Being able to pivot when life throws you curveballs is especially important. Successful people view learning as endless and contagious. I am trying to make sure I do not overwhelm myself. To achieve success, you must plan and set boundaries as it relates to time, emotions, physical requirements. I make sure I do some type of physical activity outside of the school electives. I usually dance to keep myself active and my mind clear. I also believe helping others focus and reach their potential and loving and caring for family are all keys to success. I feel like this platform will allow me to express myself. I will leave with this quote.

You cannot live to please everyone else. You must edify, educate, and fulfill your own dreams and destiny – Viola Davis

Q: What is your proudest accomplishment?

A: I have several. One of my proudest moments was writing my first book with my mother. She became extremely ill in 2020 from covid. She was sick early during pandemic before they even had any test. I helped take care of her and had to take care of myself the best way I could. Once my mom got well, we wrote a book together. I also was able to write my own book. Although I was so much younger when these books were published, they are still particularly important to me and my development as a person. Last year I won the local and state levels in the National History Day competition. I applied myself and won! I stood for my then, Middle School Clark Shaw in the National History Day Competition Last year in Maryland.

Q: What charity did you select and why?

A: I selected the Child Advocacy Center as my charity because children are the most vulnerable people in the world. My heart often aches at the thought that someone would abuse children, especially the incredibly young and those who are in special needs. I also know as a teenagers face sexual and physical abuse. I selected the center because I want to help them continue helping children and their families. The child advocacy center has a unique focus of helping children who are abused. I love the fact that at the Child Advocacy Center, there are 28 professionals from 7 different agencies working to help young victims of crime in one central location and receive all the help and services they might need.  Law enforcement, Department of Human, University of South Alabama’s Children’s Medical Center Outpatient Clinic to secure evidence.  The Assistant District Attorney, Trial Coordinator, and Victim Witness Advocates provide the victim and families with court preparation and prosecution services.  Mental health is important and with the bullying and other harmful things that children face daily it is so hard to imagine what the children and the families would do if they did not have resources like the advocacy center.

Q: How do you plan to use your scholarship?

A: I plan to use my scholarship towards funding for my future education wise. I plan to invest in uniforms and in notebooks, pencils, and textbooks that I will need in the future for school. I will use it to ACT and SAT prep books and materials. I will also use it for summer activities or fees for education related training or classes.

Support Ms. Kyla Barnett

If you would like to show your support for Ms. Kyla Barnett in her running for 2024 Junior Miss Juneteenth America, send a message to,, to purchase ad space for the 2024 Miss Juneteenth America Scholarship Pageantry Program Souvenir Booklet!

Attend the 2024 Miss Juneteenth Scholarship Pageantry Program

The Battle House Renaissance Mobile Hotel & Spa room block is available until May 17, 2024!

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