At 5’2”—and with a newly minted Harvard diploma in hand—Loren Galler Rabinowitz ’10 isn’t the typical beauty queen. Galler Rabinowitz is one of those Harvard grads with an anxiety inducing resume—she is a former star figure skater and a classical pianist. She wrote a book of poetry as her senior thesis and has plans to attend medical school. Add to that her most recent title—Miss Massachusetts 2010.
Though she did not make it past the semi-finals, Galler Rabinowitz took to the stage at the national Miss America Pageant in Las Vegas last Saturday.
Crowned Miss Massachusetts 2010 last June, she joined 52 women from all fifty states—and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands—to compete for the national title.
Galler Rabinowitz is relatively new to the world of posing in swimsuits and evening gowns—the former English concentrator entered her first pageant last spring when she discovered that the Miss America Organization is one of the world’s largest providers of academic scholarships to women. But she is far from a stranger to the spotlight.
As a competitive figure skater, Galler Rabinowitz placed fourth at the 2003 World Junior Championships and third at the 2004 US Senior Championships with her ice dancing partner David Mitchell. She kept skating during her time at the College, giving lessons and skating in exhibitions for charity. She also volunteered at Mount Auburn Hospital, tutored students, and wrote a book of poems for her senior thesis.
“We knew her well in Adams House. She was one of those people who had what you would consider an unbelievable resume. You look at what she did and think ‘Oh no, this isn’t possible,’” said John G. “Sean” Palfrey ’67, co-master of Adams House where she lived as an upperclassman at Harvard.
Galler Rabinowitz said she wants to be a pediatrician and raised nearly $24,000—more than any other Miss America contestant—for the Children’s Hospital in Blades & Balloons, a charity figure skating show and silent auction that she organized in November at the Skating Club of Boston. That won her the Miracle Maker Award, a $5000 academic scholarship, at the Miss America Pageant last weekend.
“Blades & Balloons was a real highlight for me as Miss Massachusetts,” Galler Rabinowitz wrote in an e-mail. “My job as Miss Massachusetts is not simply to be a leader in rhetoric, but to lead by example. In organizing Blades & Balloons, I was able to rally the support of nearly fifty individuals, all of whom, in addition to their volunteer duties that night, served as role models to me.”
But after winning the state pageant, Galler Rabinowitz has herself become a role model.
“As Miss Massachusetts, you’re in a position where so many people look up to you—all these kids out there that can be so inspired,” said Danielle Galler Rabinowitz ’14, Galler Rabinowitz’s younger sister.
And in her role as Miss Massachusetts, Galler Rabinowitz has reached out to children in need, throwing, for example, a princess tea party for thirty cancer patients from Children’s Hospital.
“One girl, wearing a pink tiara, pulled on my gown and said that she knew I was a real princess because I made her feel like one, and that when her hair grew back, she hoped it would be just like mine,” Galler Rabinowitz wrote. “That moment truly affirmed my desire to enter pediatrics.”
But for someone who has been wildly successful at more or less everything she has tried, she still has that ability to connect.
“She talks more about things she hasn’t been successful at. That really resonates with people, especially teenagers. One of the things that I think surprises people about Loren and especially the fact that she comes from Harvard is how approachable she is,” Brett M. Kalikow ’09 said.
—Staff writer Radhika Jain can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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