Shawnee High School graduate to compete in Miss USA pageant – Springfield News Sun

Former Springfield resident Ellen Smith will compete as Miss Kentucky in this year’s pageant, facing off with 50 other contestants vying for the crown.

The pageant will stream Monday night on Hulu at 8.

Smith’s mother, Lydia, told the News-Sun that prior to this year, her daughter had not ever competed in a pageant. However, she was inspired to do so after seeing her former classmate, Brittany Reid, win the Miss Ohio Teen USA pageant. Ellen made it her New Year’s resolution to train for and compete in the Miss Kentucky pageant.

“We were all shocked, but this experience has been wonderful,” Lydia Smith said.

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Smith graduated from Shawnee in 2016, and as a student, she participated in choir, orchestra and drama. She also was a volleyball player and an honor student, her mother, Lydia, told the News-Sun.

“The amount of support she has received is just overwhelming,” Lydia Smith said. “And the pageant is really about empowering women.”

Ellen Smith earned a journalism degree at the University of Kentucky. She is currently a multimedia journalist at Louisville station WHAS.