By April Avison
Sylvia Kidd-Swiney of Stockbridge walked down a New York runway during Mercedes Benz Fashion Week on Tuesday.
"I've had the time of my life," Kidd-Swiney said in a telephone interview after the fashion show.
Kidd-Swiney, the director of Georgia's Office of Adoptions, was selected among "extraordinary everyday women" in a nationwide model search contest sponsored by Ortho Evra birth control patch. More than 1,300 women across the country entered the contest, and Kidd-Swiney was one of 10 selected.
"We had to write an essay and submit a photo," Kidd-Swiney said. "I did it on a whim I never thought in a million years I would be selected. I was just elated."
Winners of the Every Woman model search were selected based on achievement, leadership, inner beauty and personal style.
The purpose of the Every Woman fashion show is "to give ?everyday women' a chance-of-a-lifetime opportunity to express their individuality on the fashion world's ultimate style stage, and to encourage other women to gain the confidence to fulfill their dreams," said Jennifer Curry of New York's Edelman public relations firm.
Kidd-Swiney walked down the runway Tuesday morning in a powder blue David Rodriguez cocktail dress.
"It was wonderful," she said. "I just relaxed and had fun. This is just so special."
Kidd-Swiney spent about a week in the Big Apple with a close friend, and enjoyed a limousine ride through Central Park, a tour of Ground Zero, a manicure, television appearances and media training.
"There's so much to do here," she said. "I've met a lot of wonderful interesting people."
Among the interesting people Kidd-Swiney met was Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon, a former model who starred in the television drama "NYPD Blue" as an assistant district attorney. Beauvais-Nilon hosted the Every Woman Fashion Show.
"The Every Woman Fashion Show is the first Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week show to expand the traditional definition of runway-model beauty to celebrate inner beauty, personal style and achievement," Beauvais-Nilon said in a statement. "These women are the essence of ?every woman chic' they're strong role models, they're confident, and they've worked hard to achieve their dreams. I'm privileged to host this event, which will inspire women everywhere."
Kidd-Swiney said she enjoyed telling her new friends at the fashion show about her southern home.
"People here think it's so funny that I'm from Georgia," she said. "I just feel like I'm representing the state and the county. I feel so honored and thrilled to be from Georgia."
For more information about the Every Woman Fashion Show, visit www.everywomanfashion.com. For more information about Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, visit www.mbfwnyc.com.