By Chantè Russell
Representing New York, Nia Franklin was crowned the 92nd Miss America on Sept. 9. She is being considered the first ever Miss America 2.0 as this was the first year the pageant did not include a swimsuit segment and contestants were not supposed to be judged on appearance.
“It took a lot of perseverance to get here,” Franklin said after her win. “I want to thank my beautiful family, my mom and my dad, who is a survivor of cancer.”
Franklin is an opera singer and a Winston-Salem, North Carolina native. She earned her master’s degree in music composition from UNC School of the Arts. Currently, Franklin lives in New York, where she moved after being accepted at the Kenan Fellow program at Lincoln Center Education in Manhattan.
As an artist and composer, Franklin hopes to advocate for the arts as Miss America.
“I grew up at a predominately Caucasian school and there was only five percent minority, and I felt out of place so much because of the color of my skin,” Franklin said. “But growing up, I found my love of arts, and through music that helped me to feel positive about myself and about who I was.”