fourpoints Magazine

The #1 Resource for Everything Miss America & MAOTeen

After a recent interview for an article in fourpoints' next issue, I was thinking about the challenges that face contestants today. Many titleholders step into the spotlight on stage and remain there long after their year of service is done. As public figures, and as representatives of the Miss America Organization, poise relates to style. But more than ever, it also reflects an organization's consistency of brand. Titleholders not only demonstrate the mission of their organization, but also that of their own belief systems. 

In many ways, society has become more understanding and open to ideas and opinions that are different from our own. But when titleholders are called upon to express their opinions, how do they address sensitive topics diplomatically while remaining true to their convictions

What challenges face the members of your organization, whether they be contestants, titleholders, volunteers, or members of the board of directors? How is your local or state pageant preparing young women to stand up for what they believe in the face of scrutiny? 

Written by: Erika Fifelski, fourpoints staff writer

Meet 2013 Cover Model Brooke Mills!

Monday, 06 May 2013 12:42

JBC 4801-EditI don’t know which will be more fun—being on the cover of fourpoints magazine, or the “road to the cover”! Stay tuned ... and I’ll let you know in August. For now, let me tell you about my adventure over the past three months.

In February, I decided at the last minute to enter the fourpoints Cover Model Contest. I had been a Precious Princess contestant in the past, but now, at age thirteen, I finally qualified to enter for the real deal. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would be named to the Top 25 or the Top 5, never mind the final winner! 

When I received the e-mail that I had made the first cut, I knew this was a chance to test my skill at marketing myself. My mother and I made calls to our local newspaper and to my favorite radio stations. Over the next few weeks, I was featured as somewhat of a local celebrity on the WJYY 105.5FM Morning Wake-up Show. The Concord Monitor online newspaper featured display advertising in margins with a direct link to my voting page. I also used social media to connect with friends and relatives to make a grassroots movement. Before long, we had friends-of-friends recruiting more voting support in over a dozen states, Canada, South America, and even Jordan! 

Like just about anything in life, it takes a good support system to achieve your goals. In this case, it was critical. I remember watching the vote tally climb quickly, going to bed with the lead, just to wake up two thousand votes behind the next day. At times the contest was stressful and all-consuming. My friends and family never gave up, and I want to use this space to thank them now: THANK YOU EVERYONE! Also, a big shout out to Jenn Cady, my talented and super-fun-to-work-with photographer. And last, thank you to fourpoints magazine for giving the best coverage of Miss America and Miss America’s Outstanding Teen. Your magazine highlights the class, talent, beauty, and dedication of both the volunteers and the contestants within our program. 

I am excited to represent the young generation of up-and-coming and Miss America hopefuls on your cover. Thank you to fourpoints magazine and the cover model contest sponsors for this amazing opportunity!

All my best,

Brooke Mills

p.s. Can I tell you how crazy excited I am for my photo shoot next month?!?!

April/May 2013 Trivia Solutions!

Thursday, 18 April 2013 15:01

fpts v9i2 Trivia Answers

Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan is one busy titleholder! Because she's been so involved, we couldn't fit her entire letter in the magazine. Read it in full here! 

Mallory Hagan BlogHello, again! 

Being that this is, in fact, fourpoints, I know you are all aware of the meaning behind our Miss America crown. However, I think sometimes in the midst of all the glitz and gowns, we all tend to forget what the Miss America Organization is all about. We are dedicated to education, scholarships, and service. My job is incredibly rewarding.  So far as Miss America I have had unforgettable opportunities to promote STEM, be a leader in the fight against hunger in the United States, and even attend the second inauguration of our president, Barack Obama. The Miss America Organization strives every single day to make sure that my travels are community-driven and tied to empowerment. I would say this year’s track record so far is an A++! 

This January, I was honored to begin my travels by attending the Women in STEM conference held in Washington, D.C., that kicked off the inauguration weekend. It was powerful to hear from so many influential people about the importance of mentorship in math- and science-related career fields. Being that I began my college career as a biomedical science major at Auburn University, I spoke on behalf of young women across our country who may have aspirations to achieve in a certain STEM field, but lack guidance. I wish someone had mentored me. And because of that, I hope to inspire others to engage with our nation’s youth. That same weekend, I was so excited to attend the National Day of Service started by our first family to honor the work and dedication of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. To round it out, my tour manager, Karen, and I had two tickets to see the inauguration. I think we all know the burning question by now … 

Beyonce was lip-synching. 

It wasn’t long until I met Beyonce, though, thanks to my travels to New Orleans for The Taste of the NFL. Being a part of such a huge event to tackle hunger across the country was a truly overwhelming feeling. I was given a tour of the New Orleans food bank where thousands of hot meals are served daily, thanks to the work of organizations like “The Taste,” and I was humbled by how many millions of families go to bed not knowing where their next meal will come from. It was truly special to partner with people who are raising awareness in such a big way. Following my big NFL weekend in New Orleans, I got to focus on food again in a different setting … Pancakes! 

My trip to Los Angeles consisted of National Pancake Day with IHOP and a trip to the LA Children’s Hospital for a Pancake Party. I got a little sidetracked when I met my friend Nicole. She is eleven, an aspiring actress, and ridiculously knowledgeable about the islands of Hawaii. We spent a bit of time singing songs from The Sound of Music. Again, I’d like to mention that my job rules. 

As we all know, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and the Miss America Organization have been partners for eight years now and have raised more than $13 million dollars for CMNH around the country. While I was in LA, I also had the great honor of hosting The Hub TV Network’s My Little Pony Princess Coronation Concert, where I had the ability to reiterate their storyline of hard work and dedication to all of the My Little Pony fans in attendance. Meeting all of the princes and princesses in the audience served as a reminder of just how powerful the Miss America crown can be. I was a “princess” for a day and, I’ll have to admit, I quite liked it. 

From princesses to partnerships, a few of my weeks have been spent with Miss America sponsors Amway, and Joseph Ribkoff. I had the opportunity to spend a bit of time with both companies, promote the Miss America Organization, and meet many of the people who make both companies so great! I was definitely sad to leave my time with them in Hawaii and Montreal, but excited to begin the journey of promoting my platform. 

The conversation around child sexual abuse was completely transformed for me after my trip to the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children in Alexandria, Virginia. I learned about some of the most haunting things that are happening around the world and here in the United States, but I also learned about some of the powerful laws and initiatives that the Centre is putting into action, country by country. Following that meeting I headed straight to Brooklyn, where I met District Attorney Charles Hynes and recorded a PSA to be aired around the New York City area. In addition, we held a press conference surrounding the topic of child sexual abuse, where I was able to discuss the importance of opening up this conversation in schools, communities, and in homes. Mr. Hynes was amazed by the intensity of platform and insisted that I must have the “most powerful” one to date. It was wonderful to have an open-ended conversation about the many women who have come before me with messages of importance, as well. In fact, I was able to talk about Miss America 2012 Laura Kaeppeler’s platform and encourage him to explore a new project regarding children with incarcerated mothers in Brooklyn. That meeting served as a reminder of our sisterhood and the ability for all of us to grow the organization, one conversation at a time. 

And there we have it. That pretty much sums up all of the awesome things I have been a part of since being crowned in January. It seems crazy to think that in just a few days, I will have been Miss America for two months! The time is flying by and before we all know it, we’ll be in Atlantic City vying for a spot on the boardwalk for a chance to get a peek at next year’s Miss America class. But for now, let’s continue to focus on the missions of the Miss America Organization and our commitment to encouraging young women through leadership, empowerment, mentoring, and service. We are all changing the face of this brand with such an incredible legacy, and I am just so thankful to have been given the opportunity to lead the way. 

Warmest regards, Mal 

Photo: Matthew Boyd

February/March 2013 Trivia Solutions!

Wednesday, 06 February 2013 12:41

fpts v9i1 Trivia Answers

Commitment to Community Service

Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:52

184481_450684174999000_2055698283_nWhen I was in high school, I was a Girl Scout working toward my Gold Award. I had to put in a certain number of community service hours in addition to my final project in order to be considered for the award. I don’t remember exactly how much time I spent in all, but I do know that I balanced the work between sports, friends, my part-time job, and babysitting, not to mention school …

Last night and this afternoon, Miss America 2013 contestants were recognized for the community service they do in their own communities. During Wednesday night’s preliminary competition, three states were singled out for their work with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Today, Miss Alabama Anna Laura Bryan received the Quality of Life award; a $6,000 scholarship that recognizes her outstanding achievements related to her personal platform: P.A.W.S for Autism–People and Animals Working Side-by-Side. Read more about Anna Laura and her platform in an upcoming issue of fourpoints!

I have been so impressed this week listening to contestants talk about their platforms and how they are making a difference on a local, and national level through volunteerism. Finding time for the many facets in a young woman’s life isn’t always easy or convenient, but as those who do commit to community service often find that volunteering is a reward in and of itself.

Written by: Erika Fifelski, fourpoints staff writer

The City Never Sleeps (And Neither Do We)

Wednesday, 09 January 2013 16:48

Yesterday, we left Grand Rapids, Michigan and saw Paris, France, The Pyramids, New York, New York–I can see the Statue of Liberty from our window!–and our final destination: Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas! Although it seems we’ve been around the world, we’ve already run into familiar faces. It was wonderful to see Lynnae and Natalie Benson (Natalie is Miss New Mexico’s Outstanding Teen, and her mom, Lynnae, was featured in fourpoints magazine), South Carolina pageant director Ashley Byrd, MAOTeen girls Kristin Black and Jessica Schueler, and Allison Kreiger and Jessica McKenna–featured on the current cover of fourpoints. And this is just the beginning!

From Tuesday's arrival through Sunday’s 6 a.m. flight home, we’ll be non-stop in a city that never sleeps. The fun has already begun starting at last night’s preliminary competition. We can’t wait to take in this experience and make our readers at home feel like they’re here! Check in with us every night after prelims for more stories.

Have a story you’d like to share with fourpoints? E-mail or come and find us at the MAO Tradeshow going on now!

Written by: Erika Fifelski, fourpoints staff writer

MAO 2013 is Finally Here!

Monday, 07 January 2013 08:32

The countdown to the 2013 Miss America competition is finally down to a single day. This being my first national Miss America pageant (not to mention my first time visiting Las Vegas), I'm jittery with excitement for the coming trip. When I started writing full time for fourpoints last January—just after Miss America 2012 Laura Kaeppeler was crowned—I was barely prepared for the intensity of the dedication of all those who are involved in the organization. From local to national organizations, helping young women to succeed in education, career paths, and self-discovery is front of mind for contestants, titleholders, and volunteers alike.

This week we will provide daily updates of preliminary competitions and scholarship awards in our Headline News section. News culminates in Saturday's final production, when a new Miss America will be crowned. But my hope as I post the winners from each night of preliminary competitions is that as you read our updates, you will see beyond the titles and honors bestowed on contestants and catch a glimpse what lies beneath: passionate young women from across the country who are using their positions and platforms to exemplify the values of MAO. This week is so much more than the often-stereotyped beauty pageant or a popularity contest. It is the chance for each one of the fifty-three contestants to bring her year of service to the stage, for the entire country to see.

Best wishes and safe travels to all those competing this week!

Erika-1Written by: Erika Fifelski, fourpoints staff writer