WATCH: Precious Maku Wins Fort Worth’s 2021 Miss Juneteenth Pageant

From left, Miss Unity, Jaria Gibson; Miss Juneteenth, Precious Maku; and runner-up Miss Freedom, Ariane Gibbons.(Genuineshotz)

Precious Maku, winner of the 2021 Miss Juneteenth Fort Worth pageant, and Andrea Sledge, head chair and director of the pageant, join TODAY to talk about the significance of the pageants as a way to celebrate the historic day commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.

“It’s not like me to enter a pageant and win,” said Maku, after gracing the stage at Texas Wesleyan University in an elaborate gown to be crowned. “I’m still processing everything. Like, I’m Miss Juneteenth!”

Maku joins a long history of young Black girls who have earned the title in the decades-old Fort Worth pageant, which has teens competing for a scholarship, usually to a historically Black college or university, and other prizes. The girls display their talent, wear an evening gown, write an essay and answer questions on stage.

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