2023 Mr. JFK


Rida Kadri

Jonne Ramos, winner of 2023 Mr. JFK holds a sign that his friends made to support him.

Nine worthy JFK students gave it their all in the highly anticipated annual Mr.JFK competition, putting on an energetic showcase of talent and school spirit on March 9 in the JFK Auditorium. 

Congratulations to Jonne Ramos, overall winner of Mr. JFK, Raj Patel, first runner up and Christian Simoes, second runner up. The other six candidates, Ayush Misra, Areeb Rehman, Aiden Montalvo, AJ Valientes, Youssef Diaz and Keffa Marcellus also did an incredible job.

All nine candidates put much thought and effort into their performances. The contestants overcame nerves to effectively market themselves to the JFK student body and showcase their unique abilities confidently. Giving us a backstage look at being a Mr. JFK candidate is the 2023 Mr. JFK winner, Jonne Ramos. From the very first teacher nominations, to student votes, the excitement and energy leading up to the show only grew. 

“I felt very surprised; I really didn’t expect that to happen,” Ramos said. “I was scared of doing it at first. I was like, you know what, it’s my senior year, might as well do it.  The lively atmosphere left both the candidates and audience with vibrant memories and excitement buzzing even after the show concluded. 

My favorite memory was the beginning, when I first went out on stage and I saw the audience; them cheering, it felt so surreal,” Ramos stated. The uproar in the audience as soon as the candidates set foot on stage set the tone for the highly anticipated evening, uplifting Ramos for the rest of the night.

Every year, the Mr. JFK show consists of four segments: Best Dressed, JFK Trivia, Talent Showcase and Open-Ended Questions. A panel of three faculty judges is assigned to assess the candidates’ performances in these categories. This year, the judging table sat Mr. Slaughter, Ms. Bernard and Mr. Henderson. They were accompanied by the statistician of the night, Mr. Seavy. 

Mr. JFK is not only an exciting event, but also a significant fundraiser for Senior Prom.  From concession stands to raffle tickets, the Senior Class has acquired a large amount of money to reduce the prom bid to $90 per person.

The 2023 Mr. JFK also transitioned from being run by Mrs. DiLinardo to the new senior class advisors, Mr. Wilton and Mrs. Della Serra. Working in an unfamiliar environment but making the best effort to abide by tradition, the advisors came across challenges while organizing the event. 

“There’s a lot of moving parts, you have obviously the stage, you have the lights crew, you have the sound, you also have the people on stage themselves, the candidates,” Mr. Wilton said. As a first-time advisor, running a smooth show and keeping that Mustang spirit alive was a priority, and the advisors delivered. 

“So thankfully as having Ms. D as the heir apparent before me, she was really great at keeping records of everything, so I had a lot of a basis to go off of,” Mr. Wilton said. “Obviously the YouTube channel, I watched a bunch of Mr. JFKs from prior years to set an example, so again, Ms. D set the bar pretty high, but I hope I just upheld that bar.” Successfully executing a night of liveliness and exhilaration, the student body is already anticipating Mr. JFK 2024 and the advisors are already envisioning next year’s show.  

“So the one thing I wanted to change was probably the Open-Ended questions [as] I felt like a lot of the Mr. JFK excitement is the atmosphere,” Mr. Wilton said. He added that this segment created a lull period, and wants to get the crowd more involved to heighten the energy in coming years.

Overall, Mr. JFK 2023 was a very successful event, earning lots of praise and recognition. All those involved in the organization of Mr. JFK worked very hard on the show and executed it seemlessly. The candidates did an incredible job entertaining the audience and exemplifying what it means to be a Mustang. Once again, congratulations on an amazing show!