Brianna Mason made history at the Miss Tennessee beauty pageant on Saturday, June 29. Mason, who was Miss Greene County, took home the Miss Tennessee 2019 crown and became the first woman of color ever to win the honor.
Mason’s historic win comes at a time when the beauty pageant world has been breaking down barriers with the reigning Miss America, Miss USA, and Miss Teen USA all being black women for the first time.
The 23-year old is a University of Tennessee alum and is currently a first-grade teacher in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Along with the crown, Mason took home a $15,000 scholarship.
“I can’t even put into words how special this is. I have been competing for so long, and there’s a Miss Tennessee room with portraits of all past Miss Tennessees, and none of them looked liked me,” Mason said at a press conference after winning the crown, via the Knoxville News Sentinel. “And so I’ve made it my goal for the last couple of years to make sure my face gets up there not just for me, but for all of the young ladies who look like me and don’t think they can do it just because of their skin color.
“I’m here to tell you that it does not matter what your skin color is. It does not matter what your religion is. You can do anything that you want.”
The first runner-up was Lauren Dickson, Miss Lexington, who will receive a $10,000 scholarship for her finish.
For more photos of your new Miss Tennessee Brianna Mason, check out the pictures below and be sure to head on over to Instagram and click follow to join the growing list of just over 3,800 fans who can’t wait to see her next move. You can also follow the official Miss Tennessee Instagram account.