Camille Schrier, Virginia biochemist, crowned the new Miss America 2020
SUSAN HAIGH Associated Press
December 20, 2019 at 4:14 AM
3 min reading
UNCASVILLE, Connecticut –
The organizers wanted to make it clear that the 99th edition of Miss America is not her grandmother's beauty pageant, and the winner did just that on Thursday.
Virginia biochemist Camille Schrier won the crown just minutes after impressing the crowd with science. Dressed in a lab coat, she gave a colorful chemical demonstration of the catalytic decomposition of hydrogen peroxide.
Schrier said she hopes to "break stereotypes about what it means to be a Miss America by 2020" by being a "woman of science."
No longer called competitors, the 51 women candidates from all 50 states and the District of Columbia ran for a $ 50,000 grant and Miss America's "job", a one-year paid position they hope to use as their public platform for its “social impact initiative”.
For the second year in a row, the women were tried in swimsuits or in their evening clothes. Instead, a series of interviews and talent demonstrations will determine who is most qualified to wear this year's crown.
“To make it relevant to these young women, it was important for us as a scholarship and service organization to ensure that we reflected this generation, which means you no longer needed to be defined by some kind of ideal,” said Regina Hopper, president. and CEO of the Miss America Organization.
Morgan Nichols, Miss Carolina, had her own message. She came down the red carpet wearing a long, wavy skirt, topped by a plain white T-shirt that said "Stronger."
While Hopper acknowledges that there has been a backlash of "old pageant" people who liked the old way of doing things, she said there has been a greater interest in the competition since the launch of Miss America 2.0.
This year also marks the first time the multi-day event takes place at Mohegan Sun, a tribal casino and entertainment complex in the southeastern suburb of Connecticut. Miss America organizers announced plans this summer to leave Atlantic City, New Jersey – for the second time in its history.
Miss America also switched from ABC back to NBC to broadcast the glowing ending to about 4.5 million viewers. And for the first time, the preliminary and final events – held in Mohegan's 10,000-seat arena – are being broadcast live on the NBC app.
“We had a lot of big events. This probably hits most people, "said Jeff Hamilton, president and general manager of Mohegan Sun." We're really excited about that. "
Miss America and NBC organizers have not yet agreed to a multi-year contract with the Connecticut casino. A decision is expected in the coming months.
The final winner on Thursday night succeeds 2019 Miss America Nia Franklin, a classically trained opera singer from New York.
The decision to quit the swimsuit competition has created much controversy and criticism for Miss America officials, including former board chairman and former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson, who said in 2018 that Miss America would represent "a new generation". leading women focused on scholarship, social impact, talent and empowerment. ”Carlson left office.
Businessmen from Atlantic City came up with the idea of a contest in 1921 as a way to extend the summer tourist season beyond Labor Day weekend. It became synonymous with New Jersey's seaside resort, but moved to Las Vegas in 2005, returning to Atlantic City in 2013.