In the Miss Boston Pageant Sunday evening, Kelsey A. Beck ’14 took home first place, earning the title of “Miss Boston 2012.”
Beck, a newcomer to the pageant world, will compete in the Miss Massachusetts Pageant on June 29 and 30 in Worcester. If she wins in the June pageant, Beck will go on to compete for the title of “Miss America.”
“It’s very surreal,” Beck said. “It’s such a dream and such an honor. I’m humbled by the very thought of it.”
By winning the title of Miss Boston, Beck is following in the footsteps of Loren Galler Rabinowitz ’10, who won the Miss Boston pageant in 2010. Rabinowitz then went on to win the Miss Massachusetts Pageant and to compete in the televised Miss America Pageant.
On Sunday, Beck competed against 10 other young women. During the contest, she showed off her talent on the piano, walked in both the bathing suit and evening gown portions of the event, and answered an onstage question.
In addition to the $1,500 academic scholarship included in the first place prize, Beck has been provided with a team that will prepare her for everything from being interviewed to walking gracefully for the Miss Massachusetts Pageant in June.
According to Beck, the pageant ran “perfectly” for her. She said that the question portion of the program, during which she spoke in front of an audience of about 300, was the only time that she became nervous.
“My heart was beating really fast, but one of my high school coaches told me...‘If you’re nervous, it’s good because it means you care,’” Beck said.
According to Natalie B. Doyle ’14, Beck had 35 supporters to cheer her on at the pageant, including friends, fellow members of the Harvard sorority Kappa Kappa Gamma, and family from her home state, Florida.
“This speaks to how loved she is,” Doyle said. “Knowing how bright, talented, and genuinely kind Kelsey is, we knew going in that she would be a tough contestant to beat.”
Beck’s mother, Barbara Ivey Beck—the winner of the Miss Florida Pageant in 1971—echoed Doyle’s vote of confidence.
“She’s a strong, independent, passionate young woman,” Barbara Beck said.
However, she added that she and Beck’s father would have supported her whether she won or lost.
“[Kelsey] was always going to be our little winning girl,” Barbara Beck said.
Beck said that she hopes to use her new title to advance her platform for elderly care.
“It will just broaden my circle of influence and give me a better chance to spread my platform and be a role model to young women,” said Beck.
—Staff writer Gina K. Hackett can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
CORRECTION: June 29, 2013
An earlier version of this article misspelled the city Worcester, Mass. The article also incorrectly stated the name of the national title for which state-level pageant winners compete. In fact, that title is “Miss America,” not “Miss United States.”