The Sunflower State takes two. Hailey Colborn, a 17-year-old ballet dancer from Wichita bested 50 other young ladies from around the United States at the Hirsch Memorial Coliseum in Shreveport, Louisiana on May 18. She is now Kansas‘ second Miss Teen USA titleholder after 1995’s Keeley Sue Sanders.
Colborn is an incoming freshman in Princeton University who one day hopes to venture into politics. She is also the proponent behind SelfPosi, a mentorship group which promotes self love and conducts lectures in various schools. At 5’4, she will now go down in the pageant’s history as one of its more petite titleholders. She was crowned by last year’s winner, Sophie Dominguez-Heitoff of Missouri, who now earns the distinction of having had the second shortest full reign.
Finishing 1st Runner-Up was South Carolina‘s Kirby Elizabeth Self, 2nd Runner-Up was Colorado‘s Chloe Zambrano, 3rd Runner-Up was Illinois‘ Syndi-Dion Bennett, while 4th Runner-Up was North Carolina‘s Kaaviya Sambasivam. It’s interesting to note that this the second consecutive year that a delegate of Indian descent captured the latter position.
For the first time since 2007, a second cut was made before the Final Five. Placing in the Top 10 were Florida‘s Lou Scheiffelin, Georgia‘s Savannah Miles, Louisiana‘s Lindsay Conque, Tennessee‘s Sofie Rovenstine, and Utah‘s Madilen Kellogg.
Rounding up the Top 15 (eliminated after the Sportswear Round) were California‘s Janeice Love, Maryland‘s Caleigh Shade, Michigan‘s Anane Loveday, Nevada‘s Britney Barnhart, and West Virginia‘s Trinity Tiffany. Prior to the pageant, Michigan’s delegate became an instant sentimental favorite as she was actually an orphan who grew up in the streets of Ethiopia before being adopted by Americans when she was eight.
Winning the Congeniality award before the actual crowning was Alabama‘s Kennedy Croomens. No Photogenic award was given out.
This year marked the pageant’s 10th anniversary as a livestream-only event, as made clear from the near-absence of production value. Erin Lim served as host for the second year in a row. This time, she was joined by fellow Fil-Am, Slay Model Management owner Cecilio Asuncion. It was for the first time since its inception that the pageant was held concurrently with Miss USA, set to happen in the same venue on the 21st. This was further emphasized by the clumping of both pageants’ social media updates in Miss USA‘s accounts. Given those conditions, one can only surmise what this could imply for the future of the pageant.