There She Is… Miss America 2015!

Kiannah Dole, Photojournalist

Photo courtesy of

Start spreadin’ the news! Miss New York 2014 Kira Kazantsev’s life was changed forever when she was crowned as Miss America 2015 on September 14, 2014! Her coronation was the third consecutive win for the state of New York with Mallory Hagan as Miss New York 2012, then Miss America 2013; and Nina Davuluri as Miss New York 2013, then Miss America 2014. Fifty-three young women from across the United States — as well as from the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands — went to Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall for this year’s competition. All of them went with the dream of winning over the judges’ hearts and becoming Miss America 2015. For Kazantsev, this has become a dream come true. This phenomenal young lady has an incredible and busy year ahead of her!


The four points on Kira’s crown —  as well as the crowns of the state titleholders and local titleholders — represent the four extremely important values of the Miss America Organization. One of the four points represents service. As Miss America, Kira will be making numerous appearances all over the Unites States in charity events, parades, live television interviews, national fundraisers, school assemblies, and much more. Each appearance presents an opportunity for a titleholder to give back to her community, to help make a positive difference with those around her, and to connect with others on a personal and relatable level. Many people within the community enjoy Miss America’s presence at events; this is especially true of young girls who look up to her with a radiant smile of awe on their faces. In addition to the typical appearances, Kazantsev will also make appearances pertaining to her platform issue of choice: “Love Shouldn’t Hurt: Protecting Women Against Domestic Violence.”


In addition to service, scholarship represents another major point on the Miss America crown. The Miss America Organization and its state and local organizations made over $45 million in cash and scholarship assistance available as one of the nation’s top scholarship providers and achievement programs for young women. Every contestant that enters a competition – whether it is a local pageant, state pageant, or the Miss America pageant – receives an amount of scholarship money to encourage these young women to continue their education and to pursue their personal and professional goals. Kira, for example, graduated with a triple degree – in political science, global studies, and geography – at Hofstra University and plans to use the $50,000 scholarship money she won at the Miss America pageant competition to attend law school at Fordham University after her year of reign.


Another fine point on this prestigious crown represents style. Every Miss America in history is unique in her own way and definitely shows off her own style during her year! At the Miss America competition, Kira’s talent performance was certainly unlike any other performance. Inspired by the movie Pitch Perfect, Kira sang “Happy” by Pharrell Williams while sitting cross-legged on the stage and using a red cup as an accompanying percussion instrument to the instrumental background. Kira later explained that she chose to perform as she did because it was her way of encouraging people — especially little girls — to think outside of the box and have tons of fun, rather than just performing a typical talent selection! Her style and personality shone brightly as well when she gracefully strode in her stunning evening gown and answered her on-stage question.


Last but not least, the fourth point of the crown represents success! Kazantsev has shown herself to be extremely successful at this point in her life by graduating with a triple major, having plans to attend law school, speaking 3 languages (Russian, Spanish, and English), performing an entertaining talent, forming a well-thought answer for the on-stage question, exhibiting confidence and beauty in the evening gown competition, and so much more! Undoubtedly, Kira Kazantsev has a very bright future ahead of her, especially this year as Miss America. Congratulations and good luck to Kira Kazantsev on her year of reign as Miss America 2015!


The four values of the Miss America Organization described in this article can also be seen in some of the young ladies at Yorba Linda High School. These young ladies have the potential to achieve many phenomenal things like Kira has! Who knows…maybe a future Miss America is in our midst? All it takes is a dream, dedication, and hard work! The only other addition to those three is actually applying for a local pageant of the Miss America Organization, such as the Miss Placentia/Yorba Linda Program with its informational orientation coming up in October.