Winners in the Jan. 7 local competition for 2023 Miss crowns are, from left, Ashley Bodden, Miss Bluffton; Savannah McAlister, Miss Hilton Head Island Teen; and Allison Bryant, Miss Hilton Head Island. JOSHUA WILBORN PHOTOGRAPHY

The competition for Miss Bluffton, Miss Hilton Head Island and Miss Hilton Head Island Teen was held Jan. 7 at May River High School. Miss South Carolina Jill Dudley was the host and MC for the local event.

Winners are Ashley Bodden, Miss Bluffton; Allison Bryant, Miss Hilton Head Island; and Savannah McAlister, Miss Hilton Head Island Teen.

Bodden and Bryant will both advance to compete in the Miss South Carolina competition to be held in June. The competition is part of the Miss America Organization.

Bodden attends Charleston Southern University, where she studies pre-professional biology and Spanish. She is a member of the Buc Angels dance team, a MUSC pre-med mentee, in the pre-med club and the health science club. Her social impact initiative, Mental Health for Athletes, is based on her experience as a competitive dancer. 

Bryant is a sophomore at Charleston Southern University, majoring in Business Administration. She won the People’s Choice award, Miss Congeniality, and was the overall Miss Talent winner. Her social impact initiative is The Rise & Shine Project, created from her experience as a student during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

McAlister is a high school senior planning to major in Mechanical Engineering in college, with the hopes of becoming a lead engineer for a NASCAR race team. Her social impact initiative is called #shecanSTEM: Shattering Stereotypes While Empowering Women to do the Unexpected.