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Beauty pageants represent different things depending on who you ask, but ultimately it’s a platform for women to feel self confident about themselves while also using their universal appeal to spread a bit of glamour throughout the world. At the very least, it’s also another good competition for hometown bragging rights.

One of the main issues many have related to pageantry in the past is the lack of diversity in contestants, which changed drastically in 2019 when Black women were simultaneously crowned as Miss America, Miss USA, Miss Teen USA and Miss Universe for the first time ever.

After 2020 saw yet another Black beauty crowned as Miss USA with Mississippi’s own Asya Branch, it’s now happening for a third time in a row with 2021’s champ, Elle Smith of Kentucky.


Elle Smith accepted her win last night (Nov 29) during a live broadcast of the 70th Miss USA pageant at the River Spirit Casino Resort in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Her beauty comes with brains as well, as she graduated from University of Kentucky last year and majored in Broadcast Journalism. She now will be splitting her time as a reporter for WHAS11 in Louisville with being a globally-recognized pageant queen that’s set to go for the ultimate crown as Miss Universe on December 12 in Eilat, Israel.

Here’s more background on 2021’s Miss USA Elle Smith below, via her WHAS11 reporter bio:

“As a Wildcat, she was the vice president of UK’s National Association of Black Journalists chapter, a reporter for the UK Student News Network and a videographer for UK Athletics and SEC Network.
During her college years, she unabashedly moved to numerous cities for internships and adventure. She was a Fox News College Associate in their Washington D.C. Bureau in the summer of 2019. She also worked as a videography intern in Arkansas and studied abroad for a semester in Florence, Italy.” 


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Despite the threat of travel restrictions in Israel due to the Omricon variant, as well as an unnamed Miss Universe contestant recently testing positive for COVID-19, the competition is still scheduled to go on as planned. We’re wishing Elle Smith the best of luck and health!



Kentucky Journalist Becomes 3rd Black Woman In A Row To Be Crowned Miss USA  was originally published on