It's that time of year again, that time where beautiful women grace the Miss USA stage representing their respective states in hope of being crowned the next Miss USA. The chosen winner becomes the face-off our great nation with the chance of competing at Miss Universe and representing the fabulous USA. Every year as the state winners are chosen I keep my eye out for the melanin beauties who just so happen to win their state titles. As a young girl watching the Miss USA pageant I always crossed my fingers extra hard that a Black Girl would win because that meant that even a little dark girl like me could dream of one day being on the Miss USA stage and competing for the crown.
The last woman of African decent to win the title of Miss USA was Crystal Stewart of Houston Texas in 2008. It's about time another Black Queen earned the Miss USA crown, or they could just give it to Miss Alabama USA 2016 ( Peyton Brown)
This year there are 7 lovely Black Women competing for the title of Miss USA and I am so proud of them for repenting their states and what it means to be a fabulous Black Woman.
The District of Columbia is represented by 26 years old Deshauna Barber. She is a graduate of Virginia State University and a member of Sigma Gamma Rho. She has a Bachelor''s of Science degree in Business Management and currently works as an IT Analyst for the U.S Department of Commerce. She is currently a First Lieutenant in the United States Army where she is a Logistic Commander for the 988th Quartermaster Detachment Unit at Fort Meade Maryland.
Being that Deshauna is a Black Woman who just so happens to be an Army Officer, y'all already know she has a special place in my heart. We have a few things in common and if I am not able to be on that Miss USA stage I am so proud she has the opportunity to do so.
The Miss Georgia USA title is held by the lovely Emanii Davis. She is a 22 year old Senior at Valdosta State University where she is working towards earning a Bachelors in Communication with emphasis in intercultural organization. Her favorite quote by Henry Ford is, " If you believe you can or you can't you're right."
Georgia has been one of the states that has no problem crowning minorities as it's title holders and they usually do very well at the national competition each year. Emanii will surely rock the stage.
The beautiful Miss Kansas USA is the lovely Victoria Wiggins. The 26 year old received her Bachelors Degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Management from Lindenwood University. She currently works as a fashion merchandiser and has also worked as a model.
I really love Miss Kansas looks and her evening gown from the preliminary rounds. After doing a bit of research turns out myself and Victoria have a couple of friends in common as well. I wish her nothing but the best at finals.
The Bayou State (Louisiana) is represented by Maaliyah Papillion. The 21 year old is a student at McNesse State University where she is pursuing a degree in Psychology. Additionally she currently is a board member of the South West Louisiana International Club.
First I must say that I adore Miss Louisiana's name. Just saying her name and the way it rolls off your tongue just sounds so elegant and graceful. I absolutely love Maaliyah's look and her gorgeous Black evening gown that she wore during the preliminary round of the Miss USA competition. I have never been a fan of black dresses on dark skin women. But Maaliyah's dress this year and Miss Maryland USA 2015 dress last year has complete changed my mind.
Surprisingly enough New Mexico is also represented by a Black Beauty. The gorgeous Naomie Germain currently holds the title of Miss New Mexico USA. The 22 year old is currently a student at the University of New Mexico where she is majoring in Political Science.
Interesting fact is that she was literally crowned about 30 minutes from where I am currently stationed in Texas. I almost got to witness her win. Honestly the New Mexico region has very few Black families so I was surprised when I saw that the winner of Miss Mexico USA was a black woman. It literally knocked me off my feet. I love how she dominated in a region where Black women are definitely the underdog.
Oregon also has the honor of being represented by a MelanatedQueen. 25 year old Natriana Shorter holds the title. She is currently working towards a degree in Business Management and leadership. She created a program called "Triumph" that helps young people overcome peer pressure, low self-esteem and encourages them to triumph above adversity.
Natriana is someone with a bubbly personality and such a free spirited woman. If she's crown Miss USA we definitely will be blessed to have her as our country's representative.
Last but not least the lovely Desiree Williams represents the Old Dominion State ( Virginia). 26 year old Desi is a graduate of Hampton University ( HBCU on deck) She has a Bachelor's of Science in Health & Physical Education and a minor in Leadership Studies. She also has her Doctor of Physical Therapy from Hampton as well. She currently works as a faculty member at her collegiate alma mater as an Interim Director of the William R. Harvey Leadership institute and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy. She also has co-authored an published a book entitled "Love Affair with my Hair: Why Black Women Cheat on Health"
Y'all I have to say out of all the ladies, Desi impressed me the most. Her credentials are off the chart and she definitely is a well rounded woman who will continue to excel at everything she sets out to accomplish in life.
I present to you all the Beauty Black Women who will rock the Miss USA stage tonight. Please make sure you guys watch the Miss USA competition on Fox 5 June at 6c/7e. Let me know who you are rooting for and if you will be watching. Good luck ladies, you have already made your community proud. Keep being stellar and inspiring Black girls and women nation wide.
Remember To Always Be
Fierce and Fabulous
xoxo Lela Victoria