“Legs” in the Running

This article was published in the latest online “issue” of www.Pageant.com. Enjoy!

The District of Columbia — the “D.C.” in Washington, D.C. — is one of the most unusual places in the United States. It’s smaller than the smallest of the 50 states, but in many ways it’s more powerful than any of them. It’s the custom-designed center of the mighty American government.

People from throughout the United States and the world come to work in D.C., mostly to promote the interests of folks back home. But after living for a while in the District, many people see it as their real home. That’s what happened to Kate Michael, Miss District of Columbia.

Her first big pageant victories were in Georgia. Twice she competed at Miss Georgia — once as Miss Gwinnett County, representing the home of PNB headquarters (a bit of pageant glory in itself.) But when she landed a job with one of the Peach State’s U.S. senators, she moved to the nation’s capital, and life changed. “I started to think of myself as a D.C. person,” she recalls.
Ms. Michael chose to pursue her graduate degree at Johns Hopkins (after finishing the University of Georgia in three years), and she redrew her road map to Miss America. She competed for Miss District of Columbia, and she won. “I think now it was for the best that I didn’t win Miss Georgia,” she says, but hindsight can be a great anesthetic.

You’re probably wondering whether Ms. Michael will run for office someday. Maybe so, maybe not, but she will be part of the process around the U.S. Capitol. She plans to become “not a lobbyist exactly, but an advocate.” She wants to influence the kinds of laws that Congress passes, because she wants to make a difference in people’s live.

And her nickname — “Legs” — rhat’s short for “legislation,” right? No. Ms. Michael is a tall dancer with a showgirl’s body (we got her to admit it) and there’s nothing short about those legs. To use the lingo of D.C., they’re monumental.