SEASIDE – Nichole Mead is the new Miss Oregon 2012.
The Miss Oregon Scholarship Organization announced this week that the Newport native replaces Rachel Berry who gave up the title after questions were raised about her claims of residency and eligibility. According to KATU Television News in Portland, pageant organizers said they could not find proof that Berry had lived in Oregon long enough to qualify for the competition.
Mead is a graduate of the University of Oregon with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a minor in Communication Studies. As Miss Oregon 2012, Mead receives a $10,000 cash scholarship and will represent Oregon in the Miss America Pageant in Las Vegas, Nevada on January 12, 2013.
“I grew up watching the Miss Lincoln County Pageant with my mother," said Mead. "Becoming Miss Oregon and competing at the Miss America Pageant is the fulfillment of a lifetime dream."
Mead said she is honored to represent Oregon and is excited about promoting my platform, ‘Operation Yellow Ribbon’ to raise awareness of how civilians can support soldiers who have returned from war.
"I chose this platform in honor of my brother who served overseas in Iraq for 15 months," she said. "When he returned home, I wanted to do something to encourage civilians to support soldiers."
The Miss Oregon Pageant was started in Seaside, Oregon in 1947 and it 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. The Miss Oregon Scholarship Program is a not-for-profit organization run entirely by volunteers. www.missoregon.org