Nia Franklin Named Miss America 2.0

Copy of [Copy] WordPress Image Size (2)Representing New York, Nia Franklin was crowned the 92nd Miss America on Sept. 9. She is being considered the first ever Miss America 2.0 as this was the first year the pageant did not include a swimsuit segment and contestants were not supposed to be judged on appearance.

“It took a lot of perseverance to get here,” Franklin said after her win. “I want to thank my beautiful family, my mom and my dad, who is a survivor of cancer.”

Franklin is an opera singer and a Winston-Salem, North Carolina native. She earned her master’s degree in music composition from UNC School of the Arts. Currently, Franklin lives in New York, where she moved after being accepted at the Kenan Fellow program at Lincoln Center Education in Manhattan.

As an artist and composer, Franklin hopes to advocate for the arts as Miss America.

“I grew up at a predominately Caucasian school and there was only five percent minority, and I felt out of place so much because of the color of my skin,” Franklin said. “But growing up, I found my love of arts, and through music that helped me to feel positive about myself and about who I was.”

Chantè Russell

Chanté Russell is a Howard University print journalism major from Raleigh, North Carolina. Her entire life has been shaped by her passion for writing, fashion and activism. Those passions have led her to create a blog entitled Be The Zeitgeist and serve as a staff writer for Howard’s student newspaper, The Hilltop. She has also written for Lady With Attitude and worked as a freelance journalist. Some of her biggest role models include Anna Wintour, Maya Angelou and her cousin, Dr. Jennifer Edwards, who inspired Chanté to attend Howard. After completing college, Chanté hopes to work as a fashion journalist and use her platform to combat cultural insensitivity within the fashion industry and improve the public perception of the industry.

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