PORTLAND Rachel Berry, stepped down from her position as Miss Oregon 2012 today.
In a statement, the Miss Oregon?Scholarship Program said Berry, 24, was not able to prove she satisfied the requirement of being an Oregon resident six months before she competed in the Miss Willamette Valley pageant in April 2012.
The statement did not include why her residency was reviewed.
Consequently, Berry will not be competing in the Miss America pageant in Las Vegas in January.
To compete for Miss America is a dream I have worked toward since I was young, but I accept this decision to do the right thing and relinquish this title, Berry said in the statement. In the spirit of what Miss America stands for, I would not want to deprive another contestant of the opportunity to represent the beautiful state of Oregon at the Miss America Pageant.
Dana Phillips, executive director of the Miss Oregon Scholarship Pageant, could not be reached for comment.
Berry won the Miss Willamette Valley pageant in April. She was named Miss Oregon 2012 June 30.
The pageant requires a contestant either be a six-month resident, have attended one semester and be currently enrolled full time in a local school, or be a current full-time employee of a local company for at least six months. These residency requirements must be maintained through both the local and state competition.
The Miss Oregon Pageant started in Seaside in 1947 and continues to be held at the Seaside Convention Center. In 2012, between the local and state pageants, the Miss Oregon Scholarship Program made available $452,000 in cash and tuition scholarships.