Miss New York Nina Davuluri is crowned Miss America 2014

September 16, 2013 Heather Chin
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For the second time in row–and the second time this year–Miss New York won the crown of Miss America.

Miss America 2014 is Nina Davuluri, 24, of Fayetteville, which is located right outside Syracuse. Davuluri succeeds Park Slope resident Mallory Hagan, who was crowned in January. Hagan will be “compensated” for her shortened tenure, said the Miss America organization.

Davuluri, who competed on a social platform of promoting diversity, is the first woman of Indian-American descent to win the Miss America title. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan with a degree in Brian Behavior and Cognitive Science and hopes to enroll as a medical student following her year as Miss America. The crown comes with a $50,000 scholarship towards Davuluri’s future studies.

Diversity means more than just ethnic diversity to Davuluri, who has openly discussed her weight issues, struggle with bulimia and nearly 60 pound weight loss.

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“People who’ve been overweight, especially women, feel like at a moment’s notice we can go back to where we were,” she said to the Syracuse Post-Standard in July, shortly after her win as Miss New York. “It makes you more sympathetic, more empathetic. You don’t judge. I’ve been there, and if I can pull myself out of where I’ve been, anyone can.”

Davuluri clinched the competition with a Bollywood fusion dance during the talent portion.

Davuluri will now embark on a nationwide tour to promote the Miss America Organization and its scholarship program.

She is the first Miss America from Syracuse since actress and model Vanessa Williams won in 1984.

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