Where does your passion for the arts come from?
The arts are a place of comfort for me, and have been through my whole life. It’s always been instrumental in my personal growth — the arts really developed my sense of confidence and accountability. Going to St. Joe’s for most of my life, I was constantly immersed in everything the Church had to offer in terms of the arts — I sang at church, and I led the retreat team senior year, so every grade that had a retreat I got to sing for and talk to the kids about God and the arts. St. Joe’s has really strengthened my faith throughout my entire life.
What made you want to compete for the Miss Kenosha title in 2020?
The Miss America organization, which is in charge of the Miss Wisconsin and Miss Kenosha competitions, changed a little bit a few years ago and removed the swimsuit portion — that’s when I decided to compete initially. I believe that as women, we can be confident in our own intellectual abilities and content of character rather than being judged on frivolous things like whose body best meets societal norms and standards. They started focusing more on education, which is amazing to me. You need to go through a ton of preparation for the Miss Wisconsin competition, and I feel like it’s making me an overall better person and has shaped me into more of a woman.
What was it like being Miss Kenosha during the pandemic?
Usually, Miss Kenosha reigns for one year, so I am the first-ever Miss Kenosha to do it for two years, because the organization decided to give everyone an extra year to spread their social impact initiative. This has been one of the best experiences of my life — it’s been such a whirlwind, but I know God put me in this situation because it matured me. I feel like the two things that got me through were my faith in God and music itself.
Can you talk about your social impact initiative, which focuses on arts in the lives of children?
I go into classrooms and I bring instruments for the kids, and I get them excited about the arts, because the arts are truly all around us. The arts don’t have to just be about music — it’s singing, dancing, acting, painting, coloring. I always share my own experience with the arts and how they have empowered and enabled me to reflect on what I’m passionate about, and then I read them a book, and we use music and color. Through that, the kids describe what they want to be when they grow up. I love going to schools like St. Joe’s, where we can also talk about our faith.
What’s your favorite move?
Probably “Thor: Ragnarok.” I’m really into the superhero movies.
Favorite TV show?
“New Girl” — it’s a super comedic show.
Definitely pasta. You can do so many different things with pasta — it’s so diverse.
Do you have an all-time favorite type of music?
Every single genre imaginable. I’m really not picky at all. If it bops, it bops. Especially church songs — if it’s good, it’s good.
What is something you’re good at, and something you’re not good at?
I’m really good at talking to new people and finding a way to connect with them — that’s one of my favorite things. Something I’m not good at is contact sports. Frisbee in gym class — that always scared me.
If you could have dinner with any person living or dead, who would it be?
Probably Nelson Mandela. He truly lived by his principles, and he had so much integrity and made so many sacrifices, and overcame all of his hardships. I feel like we have so many lessons to learn from him.