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‘Mr. Hillsdale,’ senior Jack Coker and his fiancee, junior Reese Temple
Courtesy | Phoebe VanHeyningen

Senior Jack Coker wins the title ‘Mr. Hillsdale,’ according to the judges in Pi Beta Phi’s annual Mr. Hillsdale Com­pe­tition, an annual phil­an­thropy event where male stu­dents compete in a pageant to raise money for children’s literacy. 

The week-long com­pe­tition begins with Penny Wars, where stu­dents vote for their favorite can­didate by placing pennies in a jar. Each con­testant also posted a photo on behalf of his cam­paign, with each like counting as a point. 

At the event, the com­pe­tition had five sub­cat­e­gories, including inter­views, swimwear, pick-up lines, a talent section, and speed reading. 

Rep­re­senting the men of Whitley, senior Jack Coker took first place, fol­lowed by Delta Tau Delta’s rep­re­sen­tative junior Carson Brown, and sophomore rep­re­sen­tative of the Women’s Soccer Team, Tristan Wer­tanzyl. Coker began Monday night’s com­pe­tition in the lead, as he won the Penny Wars by a large margin. He had two jars at the Mr. Hillsdale table in the union throughout the week to contain the amount of penny-votes he received. 

The annual com­pe­tition is Pi Phi’s largest fundraiser of the year, raising money for “Read, Lead, Achieve.”

“Pi Beta Phi sup­ports almost all of the libraries in the Arctic Circle,” senior and event co-host Reagan Linde said. “They provide the books for them, all of them in the native lan­guage of the people in that area.”

The dona­tions of Hillsdale’s Pi Phi chapter are respon­sible for most of the children’s book dona­tions in Hillsdale County, Linde said.

“The event is for a great cause, and I feel that it is a great way to bring dif­ferent people from across campus together,” Wer­tanzyl said after the competition.

Other con­tes­tants included senior Mark Miller sup­porting the cross country team, senior Matt Anderson from Alpha Tau Omega, and junior Austin Harm from Delta Sigma Phi.

“I think the com­pe­tition rep­re­sents a lot of the best parts of Hillsdale: by means of a friendly yet com­pet­itive contest, we sharpen our­selves, form a strong com­munity, and ulti­mately give back to those in need,” Nied­feldt rep­re­sen­tative and junior Colton Duncan said.