The VIPP Report: Miss Kentucky’s Outstanding Teen Scholarship Pageant Finds A New Home

MissKentuckyTeenPageantLouisville is the new site for a prominent pageant that showcases the talents of area teens 

(Louisville KY) On Saturday, June 25th at 8:00 pm one young lady will walk across the stage to receive her crown in the 2016 Miss Kentucky’s Outstanding Teen Scholarship Pageant.  Teens from all over the Bluegrass will travel to Louisville to compete for cash scholarships and an assortment of other prizes.

Twenty-three young ladies between the ages of 13 to 17 will be at the Kentucky Center for the Arts located in downtown Louisville from June 24th-25th.  Each contestant will go through two preliminary phases of competition.  Then on Saturday night, the Top 11 scorers will participate in the final competition where one will be crowned Miss Kentucky’s Outstanding Teen.

Each contestant will be judged on talent, a private interview, lifestyle and fitness in sportswear, evening wear and on-stage question.  The winner on June 25th will represent Kentucky at the Miss America’s Outstanding Teen Scholarship Pageant in Orlando, Florida from August 2-6th.

Ashley Miller, Executive Director for the teen pageant and Vice President of the Miss Kentucky board says “This system is a great opportunity for the teens of Kentucky to showcase their talents and win scholarships that can assist them in paying for college. The Miss America organization is about empowering young women with the skills they need to be successful leaders both in their careers and in their communities.  It is largely because of the skills I learned during my time competing in this system that I have been so successful in my career and community.”

If you would like to come out and support the Miss Kentucky’s Outstanding Teen Pageant, tickets start at $30.  You can purchase them at the Kentucky Center Box Office.

If you would like to be a sponsor and/or donate gift bags please, contact Ashley Miller at  To set up an interview, please call Sherlene Shanklin, at or 502-582-7716.

For additional information on the pageant please visit


 The Miss Kentucky’s Outstanding Teen Pageant is an official preliminary of the Miss America’s Outstanding Teen Scholarship Organization.  This program is empowering young women through pageantry to develop leadership skills, confidence and achieve their biggest goals in life. MKYOT is changing Kentucky, one young woman at a time!

The VIPP Report: Remembering Muhammad Ali




(Louisville, KY) On June 3rd, Louisville native Muhammad Ali died at the age of 74 years of age in Phoenix, Arizona.  The Greatest of All Time, (GOAT) had a champion’s sendoff in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.  On Friday, June 10th, streets throughout the city were blocked off so his 17-car processional could take his final journey to his resting place at Cave Hill Cemetery.

The processional led by family owned A.D. Porter and Sons Funeral Home owned by African-Americans has served the community for more than 100 years.  They traveled down Old Walnut Street, known today as Muhammad Ali Blvd one last time.  Stopping by landmarks and things important to Ali and his family.

When they passed 17th and Muhammad Ali they approached the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage where Aukram Burton, Executive Director for KCAAH captured these breath-taking and historical photos as hundreds stood at that route to say goodbye to Ali.

We invite you to use the photo with the courtesy of Aukram Burton, KCAAH.  If you use the photos, please let us know so we can share with others.

For additional information about the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage by calling 502-583-4100.

To do a story and/or obtain quotes from member of the KCAAH executive staff, please contact Sherlene Shanklin, VIPP Communications at Follow us on Twitter @thevippreport @vippcomm.


The Kentucky Center for African American Heritage is the result of a collection of African American educators, artists and historians who have collaborated to give the long dormant history of African Americans in the region the voice and platform it deserves. This group evolved from the Louisville and Jefferson County African American Heritage Committee into its current mold, with a single unifying goal of promoting the Kentuckiana region’s black heritage.





The VIPP Report: Muhammad Ali leaving no stone unturned


Courtesy: Muhammad Ali Center

As the sun goes down and I begin to prepare for the processional, funeral and memorial service of Muhammad Ali there’s a lot of emotions going through my mind.  Visualizing the brief stop on Interstate 64 right by the Muhammad Ali Center, going down Broadway where he would run to train to seeing the red rose pedals as his hearse arrives at Cave Hill Cemetery.
I made many calls inquiring stories about the Louisville native but I also took a lot of calls and emails from those who wanted to share their stories about the “GREATEST”.  Many of you have guided me and led me from one interview after another.
Growing up in West Louisville right in the community where a legendary boxer worked and trained is significant in so many ways.  The predominantly African-American community is rich in history and tradition.  I grew up on Cecil Avenue.  Its been in the headlines more than I can count these days but that street when I was growing up generated a teacher that children loved, a prominent minister, a current president of a great non-profit organization and a senator.
Ali’s street was the same.  He had teachers, entrepreneurs, physicians, and hardworking people wanting better for their families and especially their children.  Many families had no problem working 12 hours a day to see their child get into college.  Did you know that Ali had honorary degrees from Kentucky State University and the University of Louisville.
Many of the things Ali did he did out of love and not publicity.  There’s people in communities across this world that have the same sense of responsibility.
Friday, June 10, 2016 will be a day for mourners but also a day of celebration because his legacy will live on in the thumbprint he leaves behind.  The reason why I said thumbprint instead of footprints.  The champ left his thumbprint so that future awards in his honor will have his seal of approval leaving no stone unturned.
You can follow me on Twitter at @Sherlenemediapr and Instagram @Sherlenemediapro.

Muhammad Ali and Sherlene Shanklin at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, KY.

The VIPP Report: Remembering Louisville’s own Muhammad Ali


Courtesy: Muhammad Ali Center

Special Report by Sherlene Shanklin, WHAS11 Television, ABC Louisville

On Friday, June3,  the “Greatest Of All Time” has passed away.  Muhammad Ali died surrounded by family and loved ones in Arizona.  The Louisville, Ky. native born Cassius Marcellus Clay to Cassius Sr. and Odessa Clay on January 17, 1942.  Ali was the father of nine children, seven daughters and two sons.

To date Ali remains the only three-time lineal World Heavyweight Champion.  He won the title in 1964, 1974, and 1978.

Growing up as a young girl in the same city, I would see Ali on various occasions but when I close my eyes I can vividly see him running down Broadway with his brother by his side.  Muhammad and Rahman would run and shadowbox. He would be showing off and many times slowing and/or stopping traffic.  As a young girl, I used to say “What in the world is he doing?”  Not knowing he was preparing himself to be one of the most influential people in the world.  I was familiar with boxing because it was extremely popular then. I even had Greg Page and one of his trainers Leroy Edmerson as members of my church.

In hindsight, we take those moments for granted.

Another special moment is when I ran into Ali on Fourth Street in 1986. He was sitting in the back of a box truck signing autographs in front of the Galleria which is known today as Fourth Street Live.  He gave me and my mom an “Introduction to Islam” book.  I remembered he laughed about our names because they were so similar (Shirley and Sherlene).  He turned to me and said ‘how you spell that’ in his larger than life voice.

I’ve been following the household name pretty much all of my adult life.  It was only an added bonus when I had the ability to cover events and stories involving the man who had no problem telling you “I’m so pretty,” “I’m the greatest,” and “The champ is here.”  He gave hope to those that saw no hope and a voice to many who couldn’t speak for themselves.

To Louisville who has a street named in his honor, he was hometown, but to the world he was the man who floated like a butterfly and could sting like a bee. He was “The Greatest”.

Muhammad Ali died at the age of 74 leaving his wife Lonnie Ali of almost 30 years and nine children and grandchildren.

If you have a story and/or photo you would like to share send it to me  You can follow me on Twitter @Sherlenemediapr and Instagram @Sherlenemediapro for additional information and stories I gather in the coming days.

The VIPP Report is a blog created by Shanklin.  If you have a story idea send it to  You can follow us on Twitter @thevippreport @vippcomm @Sherlenemediapr.  


Muhammad Ali and Sherlene Shanklin at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, KY.

Here’s the official link to the story.


The VIPP Report: Two-time Super Bowl Champ Deion Branch will host his football camp in Louisville



(Louisville, KY)  Two-time Super Bowl champ and SB XXXIX MVP Deion Branch and his foundation returns to Louisville, Kentucky for their 7th Annual Skills & Drills Football Camp. It will be on Saturday, July 9th at D1 Louisville, 12101 Sycamore Station Place.  Registration begins at 8:00 am and the camp is from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm.

The camp is for youth ages 7 to 16.  The registration fee is only $50, which includes:  lunch, goodie bag, t-shirt and personal instruction from Branch and some of his University of Louisville teammates and friends.

Branch says “I really enjoy seeing youth learn how to go through some of the drills I went through.  We cover numerous drills to determine their potential skillset.  We show them proper techniques while having a good time.  The camp also promotes health, sportsmanship and even scholastic achievement to further a child’s education.”

If your child is interested in football this will be a good start for them.  If they are already participating in area leagues this camp will give them a leg up on their competition.

The proceeds raised during the camp will benefit the Deion Branch Foundation. The Deion Branch Charitable Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to offer support to children’s mental, physical, emotional well-being and for those who have been infected with meningitis.  The DBCF’s mission is to help with research and to find a cure to ease the struggle for children like Deion’s son. The foundation goal is to assist by providing programs and initiatives aimed at improving their quality of life. We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  For more information on the foundation go to

f you would like to be a sponsor and/or donate items for goodie bags, please contact William Hicks at 334-507-3632 or Sherlene Shanklin at 502-295-0435.  To register your child for the 7th Annual Skills & Drills Camp go to and fill out the online registration form.

To setup an interview with Deion Branch about the camp held on Saturday, July 9th, please call Sherlene Shanklin, Branch’s publicist at or 502-295-0435.


If you have a story idea send it to  Follow us on Twitter @TheVIPPReport @vippcomm.