By KJ Philp, June 2017 Issue.
Eddie Broadway is a man of man titles: Mister Phoenix Pride, Echo Readers’ Choice Awards winner and Hall of Fame inductee, dad (to Dee Jae Galaxy-Broadway), husband (to Melody Broadway), His Royal Grace Duke of the Imperial Sovereign Empire of Arizona’s Reign XI and Licensed Master Social Worker, to name a few.
But no matter what Broadway’s accomplished, he’s always had his eyes on just one more goal. One that was always just beyond his reach until March 13. On a stage in Dayton, Ohio, Broadway was crowned Mr. USofA M.I. 2017, a title he describes as the one that changed everything.
After competing in the 2016 national pageant as Mister Arizona USofA MI 2015 and earning the title of 2nd alternate, Broadway switched things up a bit. This year, he earned his ticket to the national stage as Mister Tennessee USofA MI 2016 and the rest, as they say, is history.
Echo: Can you give us the backstory as to how decided to compete (thereby qualifying for nationals) in Nashville last December?
Broadway: I thought for a while about going back, but was really unsure about what state to represent. Brandon Packer came back from Tennessee on a business trip and said, “why not there”? I contacted the promoter and … We hit it off and I decided that this was going to be my home away from home.
Echo: Brandon Packer last brought home a national title, in what ways has his journey impacted yours?
Broadway: I literally would not have won if it wasn’t for him. He sponsored me to get to Tennessee and nationals. He reigned with such purpose and dignity. He was the national title holder when I was Mister Phoenix Gay Pride in 2014, so we had a lot of time to discuss how that title prepared him for the USofA title.
Echo: Speaking of your reign as Mister Phoenix Gay Pride, what influence has Miss Phoenix Gay Pride 2014 Barbra Seville had on your journey?
Broadway: … without that reign with her, as well as becoming amazing friends with her, I would not have been prepared to do this. She taught me a lot about the business side of drag and how to make Eddie Broadway a household name. I really owe a lot of who Eddie is today [to] of her.
Echo: How have your recent accomplishments in Phoenix helped prepare you to bring this title home?
Broadway: Every single thing that I have been involved with has been a lesson of some sort, whether good or bad. It’s all paved the way [for me] to be the man I am today and help prepare me to be a successful national titleholder. It’s all so serendipitous how it all seems to have fallen into place in such a systematic way.
Echo: What did you do differently to prepare this time around?
Broadway: I took A LOT of people’s advice on my package. I wanted to get nationally recognized performers input on what to do and how to improve. I actually utilized an interview coach, which paid off as I placed first in my group and third overall in that category. I started thinking more about this reign as opposed to the crown itself. I feel that I grew a lot as a person through having to navigate a lot on my own. But when I needed them, my family and friends were there with open arms.
Echo: After all these years, what does the national title mean to you?
Broadway: It represents an ultimate dream coming true. I saw this crown five years ago and I knew one day it would be on my head. It represents my perseverance and my drive to be a leader on a national scale. It represents the countless friends, fans and family members that truly believed in me.