For The First Time, Miss USA, Miss America, And Miss Teen USA Are All Black Women

by Thea Glassman
Julia Meslener for Scary Mommy, Instagram, Donald Kravitz/Getty, and Mark Gerum/Getty

History was officially made when all three pageant winners were black women

An incredible new record has been set in the world of pageantry. For the first time ever, the winners of Miss USA, Miss America, and Miss Teen USA were all black women. This is a hugely important moment – especially given the fact that women of color were once completely barred from participating in the events.

Let’s meet our newly crowned winners and history makers. Cheslie Kryst, who was crowned Miss USA, is a civil litigation attorney and works pro bono to help prisoners who have been unfairly sentenced to long terms in prison. When asked how she would define her generation, she gave a moving answer about the positive change she’s seeing in America.

“I’m standing here in Nevada, in the state that has the first female majority legislature in the entire country,” she said, per the Associated Press. “Mine is the first generation to have that forward-looking mindset that has inclusivity, diversity, strength and empowered women. I’m looking forward to continued progress in my generation.”

Kaliegh Garris took home the title of Miss Teen USA and gave an incredible platform to disability awareness while she was at it. The 18-year-old founded We Are People 1st initiative, which aims to teach young people how to “respectfully discuss/speak to people with a health issue or disability.”

Also, there’s no way you will not smile looking at the picture of her winning her crown. “I am honestly in awe and can’t wait to show the USA what I’ve got,” she wrote on Instagram. “I am ready to spread the message of the Miss Universe Organization, the Five Crown family and my message of People First Language.”

Last, but definitely not least, was Nia Franklin who was crowned Miss America. She’s an opera singer who works with the nonprofit Sing For Hope, which helps transform lives through the power fo the arts.

“It is important to little brown and black girls to see three strong figures, three strong women, African-American women that are doing so much great work,” Franklin said, after all of the women were crowned. “People will argue that race doesn’t matter. But race does matter in America, because of the history, because of slavery.”

People took to Twitter to celebrate these women and this amazing moment in history.

So many congratulations to three really amazing, inspiring women.