Pageants often get a bad rap for being regressive leftovers from a different time. While some of that criticism is fair, the organizations that run them have made changes in recent years to become more modern. Case and point: the elimination of the swimsuit competition at Miss America. And there's no question that their reach is still enormous, with competitions running in all 50 states and in countries around the world. Franklin told the New York Times in May.
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The Miss Universe Organization MUO is a global, inclusive organization that celebrates women of all cultures and backgrounds and empowers them to realize their goals through experiences that build self- confidence and create opportunities for success. The Miss Universe Organization empowers women to realize their personal, professional and philanthropic goals through experiences that build self-confidence and act as catalysts for future success. The contestants and titleholders that have gone through the Miss Universe system are able to cultivate their personal career goals, advocate for humanitarian issues and be a voice to affect positive change in the world.
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And I think it showcases diversity as well. So I think this celebration or this landmark should we celebrated, but it's also a reminder we have a lot to do," Kryst said. As an attorney in North Carolina, Kryst practices civil litigation and also represents prisoners in pro-bono work. Miss Teen USA Kaliegh Garris, who ignored advice and proudly wore her natural curls in the competition to inspire self-confidence, said seeing this kind of representation "means a lot" to her. Now I'm getting messages from moms of biracial kids, and kids themselves that are biracial. And girls that are scared to wear their hair naturally, and them saying that I have been a big influence in their lives and that they're going to start wearing their hair naturally or that they're more proud to just be themselves. It fills my heart with joy," Garris said.
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