This new titleholder was just recently crowned on Saturday, January 16 as Miss Northern Lights 2016. Jessica Hammer competed in 5 local titles before capturing a crown on her 6th attempt. I’ve had the chance to watch her grow and compete along side her and want to say how much I admire her determination, passion for this organization, and perseverance. Congratulations again Jessica, I am so happy for you! I cannot wait to see what your year of service has in store. XO Name: Jessica Hammer
Birthday: April 28, 1996
Hometown: Portage, WI
Education: UW- Baraboo/Sauk County, UW- La Crosse, Portage High School Class of 2014
Dream job: Social media/public relations specialist for either a fashion magazine or an organization focused on women’s empowerment (but if that doesn’t work out, being a taste tester at Ben & Jerry’s doesn’t sound too bad)
Favorite color: Glitter! 1. What inspired you to get involved with the Miss America Organization? I have always had a passion for community service and my education, so when I heard that the MAO offered opportunities for BOTH (and so many more wonderful things), I was motivated to get involved.
2. What is/was your platform and why did you choose it? My platform is Girl Up: Uniting Girls to Change the World. Girl Up is a new campaign of the United Nations foundation aiming to ensure equality and a foundation for a strong future for girls worldwide by providing resources for health and safety from violence, as well as opportunities for higher education and leadership. I chose this platform because empowering girls to pursue their dreams is something I aim to do every day and I’m a firm believer that every girl, no matter where she comes from, should have access to the resources to do so.
- Miss Northern Lights is my very first title, so that in itself is one of my biggest accomplishments and the crowning moment will forever be a cherished memory.
6. What is/was your talent and what do/did you enjoy most about performing it? My talent is lyrical dance and I actually have no previous experience with lyrical at all, as I only danced jazz and poms on my high school team. My favorite part is the grace and technique that goes into lyrical, something that challenges me!
7. Who is your biggest role model within the Miss Wisconsin Scholarship Program? All of the women I’ve been able to stand beside and compete with at every local pageant has been a role model. It’s so hard to pick just one!
8. Favorite comfort food outside of competition mode? It’s a toss up between pizza and chicken nuggets. 9. Who is your favorite Miss America? Why? Katie Stam, Miss America 2009, because her platform revolves around community service and involvement, two things I also love! She also managed to nail her vocal talent performance during the final night of the 2009 Miss America pageant while battling a throat infection…talk about perseverance!
10. How would you describe the feelings you had when you won your first local? Shock, excitement, gratitude. It’s one of the most amazing feelings knowing you put your heart and soul into reaching a goal and you just achieved it.
11. If someone says, “You’re a beauty queen, what’s the relevancy of a pageant in today’s society,” what would you say to them? First, I’d pull a ‘Miss Congeniality’ quote and say “It’s not a beauty pageant, it’s a scholarship program!” Then, I’d go on to explain that serving as a titleholder means you have the opportunity to utilize your passions to make a change and be a positive role model and representative out in the community.
12. What is the most memorable moment you’ve experienced as a contestant/titleholder? So far, crowning moment!
13. How has your involvement influenced your life? I notice little things every day that I owe to my involvement in the MAO. Whether it be building my resume, applying for jobs, or simply speaking to people, I notice that the Miss America Organization has given me so many wonderful life skills that I can take with me for the rest of my life.
15. What advice would you give to fellow sisters, contestants, and young girls looking to one day compete for a title? Stay motivated, write down your goals, and never forget to BE YOU first and foremost. Giving up is not an option when it comes to shooting for your dreams.