VICKSBURG — Brandon resident Anna Tadlock has been crowned the new Miss Mississippi.
Tadlock won the event Saturday night at the Vicksburg Convention Center after making the final 10 for the third straight year.
"It feels pretty amazing," Tadlock said in a television interview. "I'm so honored and so blessed."
She won two preliminaries over the pageant's first three nights, taking the swimwear and talent competitions.
Tadlock, who qualified as Miss New South, will represent the state at the Miss America pageant on Jan. 20 in Las Vegas. She wins a $10,000 scholarship as well. The 23-year-old Tadlock is a Mississippi State University graduate.
She succeeds 2008 winner Christine Kozlowski, of D'Iberville, the first Latina winner.
Miss Heartland Danielle Smith, of Meridian, was the first runner-up a year after finishing third. Miss Deep South Rachael Shannon, of Byram, was second runner-up.
Miss Southern Magnolia Kristen Benigno, of Laurel, and Miss Hattiesburg Mary Brandon Norman, of Sumrall, rounded out the top five.
The competition began Wednesday with 47 contestants and was whittled down to 10 during a live telecast.
The others in the top 10 were Miss Leaf River Valley Jessica Cofield, a Hattiesburg resident; Miss Mississippi State University Sarah Beth James, of Madison; Miss Dixie Corie Stanford, of Saltillo; Miss Mid South Fenly Akers, of Vicksburg; and Miss Historic Crossroads Chelsea Rick, of Fulton.
James and Stanford were finalists last year.
The Associated Press