“Rodeo Queen,” Ensign, Apr. 1998, 68–69
“I’ve always had a love of horses,” says Mary Shaw, Miss Rodeo America 1998. A native of North Ogden, Utah, she went by the nickname “Mare” while growing up and liked to find images of horses in the clouds overhead. While she was in the eighth grade those fanciful horses in the sky were replaced by her first real horse, and shortly thereafter she began competing in rodeo pageants.
“Most contestants start when they’re at least five or six years old,” she says. “In a way, I had to catch up.” And catch up she did, winning the Utah state title last year and then, in December, taking the national title in Las Vegas, where she competed against 35 other women. As the winner of the pageant, Mary will represent the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association in a variety of private and civic duties.
“In a sense I’m going on a mission,” says Mary. “I’ll be representing the standards I believe in, and while doing that I can hopefully touch people’s lives.”
Mary, the daughter of Jerry and Jana Rae Shaw and a member of the Ben Lomond Seventh Ward, North Ogden Utah Ben Lomond Stake, is the latest in a string of Latter-day Saint Miss Rodeo Americas. MiQuel Holyoak of Mesa, Arizona, was 1997’s Miss Rodeo America; Tanya McKinnon of Randolph, Utah, was the reigning queen in 1996; and Michele Green of Blackwell, Oklahoma, won the 1994 pageant.