You won the title of Miss Arizona United States 2017. What does it entail ?
First off I would like to say that I am incredibly fortunate to have been selected to represent my state at Miss United States 2017. Being Miss Arizona, I get to empower and inspire others to be themselves, have a voice for what is right, and become more involved in the community. It is a true honor to be apart of such an amazing system and sisterhood!
What was the first thing that went through your mind when you won the crown ?
When my name was called I couldn't contain my emotions! I've always been told "don't cover your mouth with your hands when you win!"...and what did I do? I covered my mouth with my hands, and almost dropped to knees! I couldn't help it, I was so overwhelmed with joy! At that moment I knew I had just gotten the job of a lifetime.
You will compete at the Miss United States Pageant soon. We are all unique so what would you say is something that makes you stand out from the other contestants?
I think I am definitely a daddy's girl. Growing up we would play sports together, go camping or hiking, pretty much anything that involved outdoor activities and sports! I played a variety of sports; such as baseball, volleyball, soccer, dance, and even football! My dad actually used to coach my baseball team when I was little, and I didn't do too bad, but he told me I had a really good arm "for a girl", so he said I should try football! I wound up playing on a football team in Junior High, and not only was I the only girl on the team, but I was also the quarterback! It was so much fun making my dad proud and being able to call the shots against all the boys!
Who do you think will be your strongest competitor for the Miss United States competition ?
There are so many incredible women that I can not wait to get to know. I know from this point on, we are all apart of sisterhood that entails life long friendships and never ending support! To me, my strongest competitor is myself. You are always competing with yourself to be the best you that you can be. If you compare yourself to others, and try to be more like someone else, you lose who you are. Every year that I have competed, and not walked away with the crown, I have taken it as a learning experience. I have grown to be stronger, more confident, and driven. You have to believe in yourself, and once you do that, the possibilities are endless.
What qualities a woman should have to represent a whole nation?
As a woman who is 22, and currently working towards my 3rd degree, I would have to say that to represent a whole nation, a woman needs to be strong, knowledgeable, and compassionate. You have to be strong, in the sense that when you have all the odds against you, you still find a way to overcome and create a positive outlook. Knowledge is power, and with having that power, you can take a stand for what you believe in. A quote that has always stood out to me was said by the Dalai Lama, "Love and compassion are necessities not luxuries; without them humanity cannot survive."
What does it feel like to be a beauty queen and wear a crown?
It's only been 2 months since I was crowned, but so far, I have been having the time of my life! I love being invited to attend community service events, raising awareness, and promoting my platform "Battle Buddies". The number one reason why I love the Miss United States system is because of the amount of community service that we all get to be involved in, I think it is absolutely incredible. In my opinion, I feel like the Miss United States system is taking away the stereotype of being a "beauty queen". It is about so much more than just being beautiful on the outside. If you have the heart and the compassion to make a change in the world, it will go so much further.
Did you face any moment of disappointment with yourself during the pageant journey, and how did you overcome it?
I've been asked this question several times, and I would have to say no. I have never been disappointed in myself throughout this process. And I think there are several contributing factors to this. One, is because of all the love and continuous support I receive from friends and family. No matter the situation, they are always giving me reason to be proud of myself. I always try my hardest to make light out of every situation. I believe if you keep having a positive outlook, you continue to grow and learn. It pushes you to better yourself, and It is all part of the process.
Who is your favorite beauty queen and why?
This is a tough one! There are so many incredible ladies that I look up to. If I had to choose, I would have to say Olivia Jordan Miss USA 2015. I have looked up to her for the last few years because of the way she presents herself. She always seems so positive and genuine.
Olivia Jordan when she competed at the 2015 Miss Universe Pageant in Las Vegas
How do you imagine your life in ten years?
I am a very goal driven person! With that being said, I first, plan on finishing my degree in Architectural Technology. I love to learn! In the next 10 years, I plan on working my up at the company I am currently at, and becoming a Project Manager. I love to be a leader, and someone that people can look up to! I feel so blessed to have people in my life who encourage and support me. I can see myself starting a family with the love of my life, traveling the world together, and experiencing life to the fullest!
Thanks to the beautiful Ashley for the interview. Pageants News wishes you all the very best for Miss United States 2017 pageant.