Welcome to our new MAOTeen Elizabeth Fechtel! And welcome home to me! Now that I'm back in the office and have my desk cleaned off (that's no small task, trust me) , let's talk about MAOTeen. What a great week! I hope that you guys stayed in touch with the pageant happenings through our Twitter, Facebook, and all the articles/videos on the web. In case you couldn't tell, fourpoints had a total blast during pageant week! Every year, it's so inspiring to see our relationship with MAOTeen grow. And each class of contestants is just as wonderful as the last.
Another of of the best things about MAOTeen is that I get a "sneak peek" at the 2012 Miss America contestants. I had the pleasure of chatting with our Miss America 2011 Teresa Scanlan while she signed autographs at our booth during pageant week. She was as lovely as ever. It's so impressive to me to see a Miss America about halfway through her year of service, and she is as fresh and cheerful as the day she was crowned. Every reigning Miss America I have ever met has been that way, and - well, let's just say that I don't think I would be so pleasant! It was nice to have a moment to talk with Teresa.
I also got to do one of my favorite things, which is have my makeup done by an Aristrty professional. I am seriously in love with their products - and I'm not just saying that! He even managed to make me look believably tan - a true artist!
Of course, the most exciting part of the week is seeing our new MAOTeen crowned. Elizabeth is going to do a great job and I can't wait for you guys to see her on the cover of the October/November issue.
As a final note, though, I want to extend my congratulations and affection to the entire MAOTeen class. Time and time again, I find myself thinking that every contestant who competes really wins. As Donna Bozarth mentioned during pageant week, MAOTeen has already written half a million dollars in scholarship checks. And those didn't go to just the winners of the national pageant. So many young women are stepping into their future with scholarship money, a great skill set, and an unforgettable experience.
During pageant week, I had the chance to speak to some of the contestants. They all had wonderful things to say, but one thing has stuck with me. Miss New Hampshire's Outstanding Teen Lauren Percy gave MAOTeen the highest accolades it could ever receive. She said, "This organization has give me the confidence to take my make-up off and just be who I am."
I hope that every young lady had the same experience that Lauren did.