This past weekend, Serene Singh, 23-years-old, won the coveted National American Miss pageant held in Orlando, Florida at the Hyatt Regency Orlando. Singh represented her home state of Colorado competing in the world’s largest pageant with this year’s numbers totaling over 700 women from across the country.
“I woke up realizing my dream of many years is now my reality. I have so many exciting plans and goals for this year to work on behalf of girls and women across the country amidst a global pandemic and I am 100% prepared to dedicate my whole self to lending my voice to causes that matter most to me. I am immensely grateful to all those in my community who helped me reach this point in life – it truly takes a village, and I am lucky beyond words for mine,” says Singh.
As part of the National American Miss national pageant competition, contestants are judged on evening wear presentation, interview, personal introduction, community involvement, and their resume. Contestants advancing to the Top 5 of the pageant must compete in a live televised onstage Q/A segment. This year, Singh competed against the largest number of girls in the Miss division historically, making this a record-breaking win in many ways, including being one of the very first South Asian women to ever place in the Top 5 for the Miss division, let alone win the coveted crown. Moreover, Singh is the first Coloradoan to ever win the National All-American Miss title.
The pageant provided strict rules for all contestants, staff, and judges in order to comply with the official guidelines from public health officials and ensured the safety of everyone was given the utmost of importance throughout the week. Singh says, “When I won, I forgot the time we are in momentarily and tried to hug my predecessor and quickly realized it’s 2020 and pulled my arms back and resumed my profuse crying (of joy).”
Singh is taking home to Colorado with her the official national award package for winning the crown but also the National Casual Wear Model award title, Golden Achievement for her volunteer work with at-risk women through her nonprofit, Academic Achievement, Heart of Service, Top 3 in Talent in the country, among a few others.
She is not just about pageantry and modeling. She states, “being multi disciplined has always been important to me. So often girls are told to pick one thing to be good at when really, I think this world needs to see all of our many talents and gifts for the next generation to grow up seeing themselves as nothing less than unstoppable. That is a very special message I always share to girls I work with – be fearless with who you are and how you show up, always.”
The 23-year-old is also a prestigious Rhodes Scholar, Truman Scholar, and Fulbright Recipient who is a University of Colorado alumnus and a current Doctoral Candidate at the University of Oxford. Just weeks before the national pageant, Singh graduated as the youngest student in Oxford’s esteemed Blavatnik School of Government’s Master in Public Policy degree with students from 100+ countries.
As the very first Victoria Secret GRL PWR campaign winner, former intern for Mrs. Obama’s Global Girls Alliance as well as the Founder of The Serenity Project, a nonprofit that works with at-risk women across the U.S. to help them build confidence, self-love, and gain influential women mentors, Singh is deeply passionate about bringing awareness to women’s issues as well as advocating for women’s rights. As a former America’s Junior Miss as well as Miss Colorado Teen, Singh’s focus this year is on “self-esteem of girls and women, girls’ education, diversity and representation, and women’s rights and issues.”
Throughout the next 365 days, Singh is under contract with the National American Miss pageant and can be booked for appearances, keynotes, sponsorships, etc. through her social media platforms or website. At the conclusion of her year as a titleholder, Singh will return to Florida next year to crown her new successor.
“I know girls and women across this country and the globe do not have access to the same opportunities I have had in my life to be where I am today. That very notion is what motivates me to give what I have been given in meaningful and tangible ways constantly in life. This crown and banner is a microphone, a platform, and a chance to reach thousands of individuals in order to amplify the work I do and serve in ways that have positive impacts on the lives of others lasting long after my year as a national titleholder. The glam and rhinestones are undoubtedly fun, but the work to serve begins now and I am so excited for what is ahead,” Singh says.