My road toward becoming Miss Pennsylvania was a long and challenging one. However, along that journey, I came to understand that the value of the Miss America Organization extends far beyond a winner wearing a crown. Most of all, I realized that if you want something badly enough, and you are willing to work hard enough, you can achieve it! I am honored to have served as your Miss Pennsylvania. It has been the journey of a lifetime.
I have met many people, each of whom had their own definition of who Miss Pennsylvania is to them. During my year, there were several brief, enlightening moments when I learned exactly who Miss Pennsylvania is and what she stands for. I came to understand, that she is, MORE. MORE than a pretty face sitting on the back of a convertible. MORE than four inch high heels and a swimsuit. I've seen that Miss Pennsylvania moves brave veterans to tears when she enters the room, she inspires elementary students to work together for a cause, and she commands respect in boardrooms and the halls of the state capitol.
Miss Pennsylvania has afforded me life-changing opportunities and unforgettable experiences. I have spoken at schools, hospitals, and universities advocating my platform. I lobbied the state legislature on healthcare issues, met with the Governor, and championed improvements in pediatric medicine. This job is not without fun though! I also threw out first pitches, headlined parades, flipped pancakes, kissed the Philly Phanatic, and celebrated my birthday in Las Vegas!
This year has truly been a blessing and dream come true, but it would not be possible without the encouragement and assistance of so many. First, I want to thank God, for without Him, none of this would be possible. To my local and state directors, board members, friends, family, and supporters, thank you for all of your help, guidance, and expertise. You have truly made my year wonderful! To my brothers: You have always been my biggest fans and the loudest cheering section! Thank you for being such great role models for me and teaching me to always set the bar high and never settle for less than my best! To Nate: Despite all of the ups and downs of medical school and pageants, your love and commitment to me was unwavering. I could not have asked for a better "Mr. Pennsylvania". To my Mom and Dad: Together, you have taught our family the true meaning of hard work, humility, perseverance, and love. Thank you for embarking on this journey with me. You have truly earned your titles as Mama and Papa PA.
My journey as Miss Pennsylvania may come to an end tonight, but I will always carry the memories and experiences with me. As I continue my career in medicine, I will look back fondly on my years of competition and realize it helped shape me into the woman I am today and the physician I will become. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for making this past year so unforgettable.
Never give up on your dreams.
All my best. And God Bless.