Mission & History
The Ms Senior America Pageant is the world’s first and foremost pageant to emphasize and give honor to women who have reached the “Age of Elegance.” It is a search for the gracious lady who best exemplifies the dignity, maturity, and inner beauty of all senior Americans. The Ms. Senior America Philosophy is based upon the belief that Seniors are the foundation of America, and our most valuable treasure. It is upon their knowledge, wisdom, experience, and heart for service, that the younger generation may also gain knowledge and the opportunity to build a better society.
Floyd Caiazzo & Denise Russo-Caiazzo, CEO and President respectively of the Ms. Senior America, LLC, became the full owners of this dynamic organization (scroll down for history) in August 2021.
Before taking the reins of Ms. Senior America, Floyd enjoyed a successful career as an Electrical Engineer in New York City for 24 years; working at Structuretone and Levest. He served as a project manager on numerous projects including The New York Police Academy, the Intrepid Air and Space Museum, Chelsea Piers Park, and various Homeland Security sites. He is a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Floyd earned his B.E. from Lehigh University and now shares his experience and wisdom with young people as an adjunct professor for Northhampton College in Pennsylvania. In his spare time, Floyd enjoys fishing, sports, hiking, wine making, guitar & singing, and is the short-stop for his “senior” softball team and is an avid history buff.
Denise held the title of Ms. Pennsylvania Senior America in 2015. She subsequently became the Administrator for the Pennsylvania Pageant until 2021. She was the sole proprietor of the “Glass Slipper Pageant Academy.” The inspiration came from her being a graduate of a finishing school in her teens, where she later returned as the head instructor. At “Glass Slipper,” she was able to share her joy of the benefits of learning and utilizing social graces, teaching …
simple concepts that encourage girls, young and old alike, to believe in themselves, building their self-confidence and enhance their leadership skills. Her academy produced numerous pageant winners at the local, state, and national levels including a Top 10 contestant in the prestigious Miss USA Pageant. In her spare time, Denise is a competitive cook winning numerous awards including the PBS Christmas Cookie Challenge; loves crafting and event planning. She holds two degrees: a B.A. Degree in Speech Pathology and an M.A. Degree in Education from East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania, graduating both with honors.
Denise’s love for pageantry began when her high school sweetheart, Floyd, entered her in and she won the Miss Pocono 500 Competition at the Pocono International Raceway. They both got the “the bug” and their journey in pageantry has continued ever since. Floyd and Denise’s musical and creative talents and career experiences have spurred numerous invitations to judge pageants on the local, state, national, and international levels since the 1980’s. When their son Julian, and daughter, Rachel came along, and their gifts for the arts became evident, Denise set aside her academy business and turned her attention to helping them hone their crafts. They pursued acting and modeling careers in NYC, with her son landing a recurring child role on ABC’s daytime drama, “All My Children” as the son of characters played by Kelly Ripa and her on and off-screen husband, Mark Consuelos. When her children were successfully on their own, Floyd and Denise ultimately found their pageant passion in the Ms Senior America Organization and took positions on the national staff. They believe in honoring senior women, showcasing their talents, wisdom, and leadership in the “Age of Elegance.” Floyd and Denise have been side by side for 48 years including 46 years of marriage. The Caiazzo’s partnership in life and love is a beautiful bond and their commitment to all things Ms Senior America, its legacy and mission, keeps them inspired and working as an amazing team. The Ms Senior America Organization is blessed to have them at the helm.
THE NATIONAL SENIOR-AMERICA ALUMNI ASSOCIATION
The original name was the National Senior America Cameo Club and the first President was Mrs.
Florence Bowers (1972-1974.) The name changed in 2013. We are honored to have Mrs. Linda Anthony,
former Ms. North Carolina 2013 Senior America, serving as our current President.
NSAA MISSION STATEMENT:
The National Senior-America Alumni Association is a non-profit association (501-C3) made up of former participants in the MS SENIOR AMERICA Pageant whose annual dues support, strengthen, and sustain this National Sisterhood.
1. You must have been a member of NSAA for 3 consecutive years to run for an office in the organization. Elections are held
every 2 years, and if elected as an officer, you must commit to attend the National Pageant during your years in office.
2. NSAA dues are $25 per year. All dues must be paid by December 31st for the next year's membership.
3. NSAA gives the National Queen cash during her year for travel expenses. At the 2022 Pageant, the amount was $4000.
When the National Queen receives an invitation to attend a pageant, the NSAA reimburses her for the airline tickets,
baggage, or rental car, gas, etc. to get her there and back. Each state is responsible for her lodging, meals, and
transportation (if necessary) while she is there.
4. NSAA gives cash awards to the Top Five Court at the national pageant each year.
5. NSAA gives cash awards to the most improved Cameo Club Membership and to the Cameo Club with the largest Membership.
6. NSAA pays for the publication of the CCN Magazine which comes out twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall.
7. NSAA gives each new member a pin upon joining the organization. New membership cards are issued each year upon
renewal. The card should be brought to the NSAA meeting each year.
8. NSAA Pays for performance tracks and Sheet Music if needed for the Queens Choir. The alumni choir performs at the
National Pageant Each Year.
9. Our mission is to keep our sisterhood alive, archive our history, and support the hard working philanthropic Cameo Clubs
nationwide. We are especially proud to support and increase funds each year to help support our National Queen in her travels
to state pageant, and to present cash awards to her court and Cameo Clubs.
10. Our organization thrives from the annual membership dues and fund-raising activities.
Our founder, Dr. Al Mott held his first “Ms. Senior Citizen” pageant in 1972. This was a time when seniors had neither financial security nor robust health. As a former 20th Century Fox recording artist turned minister, he successfully utilized his “show business” background to raise public awareness and highlighting the need to support and honor our senior citizens, and especially senior women. The organization’s positive philosophy quickly spread throughout the country and blossomed into a national pageant. In 1981, he changed the name to “Ms Senior America” and incorporated “Ms Senior America LLC” in 1981 after crowning the first national Queen, Margaret Callan, in 1980. Dr. Mott, and his wife Betsy, worked tirelessly for almost 50 years to keep their mission and legacy alive before successfully passing the torch. He jovially proclaimed that we are “Taking women from the rocking chair to the runway.” We are committed to keeping his founding principles and mission alive for decades to come.
LEGACY AND THE SISTERHOOD
The sisterhood formed in the Ms Senior America Organization is special and lasts a lifetime. But who would have imagined that three blood sisters raised during the great depression would all one day win the Ms Senior Pennsylvania crown? "The Coulson Sisters" were a popular trio who sang together for many years on the radio and for many local events.
The PA Sister Queens and their reigning years from left to right: C. Eleanor Coulson Heller, 1997, June Coulson Rhoads, 1989, and Merle Coulson Millhimes, 1994
Bonnie Hughes, Ms. Senior Mississippi 2011, and her mom, Gladys Hughes, Ms. Senior Mississippi 2003
Sherri McGhie, Ms Senior New Jersey 2015 and her mom, Norma McGhie, Ms. Senior New Jersey 1995
Frann Brooks Griffin, Ms. North Carolina Senior America 2018 and her mom, Sarah Brooks, Ms. North Carolina Senior America 1998
The Ms Senior America Organization is proud to award former state queens who are living in the Age of Elegance and continuing to serve others and volunteering with this organization with the Distinguished Honorary Senior America Sash. They epitomize the inner beauty and hearts of service that are key components to the Ms Senior America sisterhood. Congratulations to Merle MIllhimes, Norma McGhie, Sarah Brooks, and Gladys Hughes on achieving this high honor!