Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"What can you do to make Miss America relevant?": My Day in the TN House of Representatives

I would compare my feeling of walking into the Tennessee State Capitol, just before a meeting of the House of Representatives, as the average girl would compare being let loose into the Neiman's shoe department-- Overwhelmed, but in the very best kind of way.

Those of you who know me know I love politics, I love law, and I also just happen to love shoes. For many years now, the usual first statement that I hear after being asked what career choice I have chosen to pursue is "OH! Like Elle Woods in Legally Blonde!"

Um. Because I have a lot of hair and dress nicely? Thanks.

Most of the time I quickly skew their "quick-to-judge" opinion of me the second they begin to question my opinions on hot button issues and local news.

So, I won't say I wasn't nervous about wearing my crown into the House of Representatives-- I didn't want a single person there to assume that because I was wearing a crown and red lipgloss that I wouldn't be able to have an intelligent conversation.

They didn't.

Sitting with Representative Matthew Hill (part of Washington County - From Jonesborough, woo!) and Representative Glen Casada (part of Williamson County), I felt right home. I talked with them about my platform, Let's Make "Healthy" Fun!, and my love of working in politics and hopes of becoming a district attorney one day. They showed a genuine interest, asked me questions, and Rep. Casada even invited me to appear at an event for Get Fit Tennessee in Nashville. [Sidenote: I also swiftly schooled them on the difference between Miss America and Miss USA.]

I guess what I am trying to say is that over and over again we are asked, "What can you do to make Miss Tennessee and Miss America more relevant?"

The answer is to SHOW THEM. That's all you can do to make anything more relevant-- Show them what you are doing, WORK to get yourself out there. That's all it takes. Say Yes, I wear make up, Yes, I have a giant sparkling crown on my head and tell them what that crown is helping you to accomplish.

They'll listen.

Jennifer Leigh :)

With Matthew Hill

With Glen Casada

With Speaker of the House, Beth Harwell

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

"Keep Calm and Carry On"

I have been keeping busy, busy, BUSY! The last few months have been a whirlwind of appearances, community service, prelims, wardrobe putting together, and Miss Tennessee preperation-- and it's only going to get better!

I FINALLY got to meet all of the other 35 beautiful Miss Tennessee contestants at Workshop in Jackson this past weekend. Like everyone else I am now counting down the seconds until June! During lottery I picked the 7th spot in Group A and the week of Miss Tennessee will be competing in Talent on Wednesday night, Swim Suit on Thursday night, and Evening Gown on Friday night.

Miss Tennessee Class of 2011

Miss Northeast TN, myself, and Miss Nashville

Miss Memphis, Miss Parsons Peavine, Miss Northeast TN, myself, Miss MTSU, and Miss Walking Tall

After Workshop, all the ladies attended the Miss Tennessee Outstanding Teen and Teen Princess Pageant where we watched some very talented and lovely girls compete for the titles! Congratulations to Miss TN Outstanding Teen, Madison Snipes, and Miss TN Teen Princess, Jocelynn Jordan!

The winners and runners up!

Myself, Miss Northeast TN, Miss Kingsport, and Miss Capital City

I'll post another update of all the other activities that have been going on soon, as well! I'm also gearing up for some exciting events with my platform, Let's Make "Healthy" Fun, and am always on the look for more! If you would like to have me visit your class or after school group to speak with your kids about healthy eating, staying active, and explaining what "healthy" really is, please contact me!

Keep calm and carry on :)

Jennifer Leigh

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Don't worry, y'all, I'm still here...

The last month has been jam packed with lots of preperation for Miss Tennessee-- we're getting so close! This weekend, I had the opportunity to get a few very important things taken care of including wardrobe (Thanks to Paige, Jared and everyone else at the fabulous Joann's!) and my Miss Tennessee headshots! I had a fantastic photoshoot on Friday with the talented Kristy Belcher and Joel Green. I have several appearances coming up this week, including a performance at the Veteran's Administration, that I will update on later, but for now I just wanted to share a few pictures from the shoot!

Click on the picture to view my Facebook Album!

Much Love,
Jennifer Leigh