Conversation With…Miss District of Columbia

I know, I know, she’s not from New England, but all are welcome here. The lovely Miss District of Columbia, Allison Kathleen Farris, sat down with New England Pageant News, to talk about her time at Miss America.

What has your experience been like so far?
It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. There’s nothing like it. Just getting to know everyone and getting to experience Miss America as a group, is a great experience.

How’d interview go?
It went well. I feel like they were able to understand who I was, as a person, and what I bring to the table for the job of Miss America. They’re wanting someone who is very motivated and driven to really give back to their communities and serve. I’m a software developer and I promote women in technology. It wasn’t until I discovered using software that I realized I could turn my passion for music — growing up as a musician — into a career through technology.

Are you looking forward to the on-stage question?
I’m very excited. It’s an extension of our private interview, but we get to bring it out on-stage, in front of the audience, so they get to see who we are as a candidate a little bit more.

What about the changes going on in the organization?
We’re very flexible. We’ve always known that the job of Miss State, or wherever we represent, requires us to be flexible and adaptable. I think that’s a very useful skill in the workforce, and incredibly important to understand and know. We’re very excited. We’re eager to know how it’s going to come out on camera and for the audience to see it.

If, by some chance, you don’t win, what do you hope to get out of this experience?

There’s so much you gain. First of all, you know one person, at least, from every state, and it’s important to network.  It’s all about your network, especially in the professional world. But also, it’s about the skills that you have to learn to get to prepare for this moment, and to be at your best. It’s kind of like the Olympics, in that it’s something that you have for the rest of your life.

What do you want to say to the folks back in D.C.?
I’m full of gratitude and could not be here without their support. It’s incredibly humbling to be able to represent the District of Columbia, the nation’s capitol, and that is something that I will cherish for the rest of my life.

Conversation With…Miss Vermont

Miss Vermont Julia Crane spoke with New England Pageant News about her time in Atlantic City, friends she’s made and how well the organization has been taking care of the contestants.

How has your time in Atlantic City been so far?
It’s been really fun. It’s been everything I’ve ever hoped for. Participating in the arrival ceremony was really fun. That’s something I had always seen, and I got to sign the map. That was kind of a highlight.

How was the golf outing?
I had never golfed before, so that was a new experience. I was not good at it. Some girls had played golf before — they helped me, because they knew what they were doing. But, they had us sit with different families from the country club, and the family I sat with was amazing. They didn’t know anything about the Miss America program, but they were really supportive. We got to educate them, and they were really impressed with what we do.

What about these 50 other ladies?
Getting to know all the girls has been amazing, and I love every single one of them. Whoever wins Miss America 2019, the title and the job will be in good hands. Everyone could do a unique but amazing job at it. I know it’s going to be a challenging year, but I trust all of these girls with the job.

How were the judges in the interview room?
It’s really hard to know what they’re looking for every year, but this year especially. I walked away knowing that I was completely Julia, and  I got to say things I wanted to say, so I can’t be happier with it. I know they want someone who will be dedicated to the job and all of the challenges that come with it.

What do you hope to get out of this whole experience?
I was talking to Tiana V, Miss Wisconsin, and we were saying, “What a win-win!” You come in here and you get to represent your state, which you’ve wanted to do for so long, and then you get to know these 50 other amazing women.

How are the growing pains the pageant is going through affecting the contestants?
All of these things that have been going on within the organization, but outside of the competition –there’s all of this drama, and a lot of talk — it’s made us closer. With what we’ve been experiencing, the negative and the positive, we’ve had each other to lean on. Compared to other classes, I think it’s made us closer. We are a very tight class. So, if you don’t win, you still have 50 other sisters, and you can go back home and still represent your state. If you do win, you get to be the face of this class, which is so special. They have gone out of their way to make sure we are all so comfortable here.

Thoughts for everyone in the Green Mountain state?
I have been trying to represent my state with the most heart and pride that I can. I want to put Vermont on the map. We are the only state that has never had a woman place in the top fifteen. So, I am trying my hardest to make them realize how special Vermont is. Vermont has raised me to be confident in who I am.