SUZANNE MARINO/Ms. New Jersey Senior America Ferlie Almonte is flanked by the runners-up. From left, Mary De Cohca, Roe Picoli, Almonte, Lenore Cibelli-Lambert, and Bernadette Jones.


ATLANTIC CITY – The Ms. New Jersey Senior America pageant was held Thursday, June 1 at Harrah’s Resort and Casino.

Twelve contestants over the age of 60 sang, danced and performed original spoken word poetry in an effort to win the crown.

The winner, Ferlie Almonte of Toms River will have the honor of representing the Garden State in the Ms. Senior America pageant in October. The contestants also competed in evening gowns and presented their philosophy of life.

Ms. New Jersey Senior America Ferlie Almonte.

Almonte, a motivational speaker, radio host and author, sang “Smile,” made famous by Nat King Cole.

Runners-up are Mary De Cohca of Manchester, Bernadette Jones of Trenton, Roe Picoli of Toms River, and Lenore Cibelli-Lambert of Sayerville.

Ms. New Jersey Senior America contestant Thelma Witherspoon.

Several local women competed in the pageant including Committeewoman Thelma Witherspoon of Hamilton Township, who sang “You Light Up My Life,” and Priestess Wallace of Atlantic City, who performed an original poem.

Ferlie Almonte is crowned Ms. New Jersey Senior America 2023 by outgoing Ms New Jersey America 2022, Betty Jean Pace, and Ms New Jersey Senior America 2017, Terry Meade.

Categories: Atlantic City

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.