All 53 contestants competing for the 2012 Miss America Pageant debuted in their Express fashions at the annual arrival ceremony at Planet Hollywood Resort in Las Vegas. Returning to the Theatre for the Performing Arts for the seventh consecutive year, the contestants’ arrival kicked off a week of preliminary competitions (interview, lifestyle and fitness, talent and evening wear), culminating in the live telecast on ABC, Saturday, Jan. 14 at 9 p.m.
On hand to welcome and introduce the 2012 Miss America Contestants were Rossi Ralenkotter, President and CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority; Tom Collins, Commissioner and Board Chair of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority; David Hoenemeyer, Regional President of Bally’s, Paris and Planet Hollywood; Sam Haskell III, Chairman of the Board of the Miss America Organization; and Art McMaster, President and CEO of the Miss America Organization.
This year’s Quality of Life finalists were also announced at the ceremony.
The eight finalists and their personal platform issues are:
Miss Arkansas Kristen Glover — Second Chances Through Mentoring
Miss Hawaii Lauren Cheape — C.A.R.E., Collegiate Athletes Reaching Everyone
Miss Kentucky Ann Blair Thornton — Alzheimer’s Awareness and Research
Miss Michigan Elizabeth Wertenberger — Continue to Dream — Giving Hope to
Children with Chronic Illness
Miss Minnesota Natalie Davis — Autism Awareness: The Missing Piece
Miss New Hampshire Regan Hartley — Bullying Awareness in Our Community
Miss New York Kaitlin Monte — Anti-Bullying Through Youth Leadership
Miss Ohio Ellen Bryan — Promoting Lightning Awareness — “When Thunder Roars, Go
The Quality of Life Awards were introduced in 1988 to recognize contestants who excel in their commitment to community service. In order to be considered for the Quality of Life Award, contestants must submit an application describing their involvement with Children’s Miracle Network, the national platform of the Miss America Organization, and their own personal platform issue.
The winner of the Quality of Life Award will receive a $6,000 scholarship, the first runner-up will win a $4,000 scholarship, and the second runner-up will win a $2,000 scholarship. Winners will be announced at Planet Hollywood Resort on Jan. 14.
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