Congratulations! We have a new Miss America and her name is Nia Imani Franklin. Miss New York wowed judges with her beauty and incredible voice. Here’s everything you need to know about the newly crowned winner.
Congratulations to the new Miss America, Miss New York, Nia Imani Franklin. The classically trained opera singer wowed judges with her poise, grace and beauty and walked away with the crown in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Sept. 9. But the University of North Carolina School of the Arts grad is not just a pretty face with the voice of an angel. There’s plenty to know about the Winston-Salem native who vowed that she would be a “champion for all children to have access to quality art education,” if she won the pageant.
1. Nia composed her first song when she was just 6-years-old. The lyrics were very simple, according to her bio on the Miss America website. Very easy to remember and incredibly sweet: “Love, love, love, love, love, is the only thing that matters to me hey, hey, hey, hey, hey.”
2. As she mentioned during the ceremony, Nia was one of the few people of color at her school, but she believes that her love of the arts helped her to bond with her fellow students. “Although I was a minority in my school, I connected with my peers based on our mutual love of the arts,” she said in her Miss America bio. Or, as she said during the ceremony, “I found my love in arts and music, and that made me feel positive about myself and who I was.”
3. She majored in music composition and has dreams of winning a Grammy. In addition to singing, she also writes songs and composes music and is an advocate for cancer research, according to the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.
4. Nia’s father was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma during her freshman year at college. She used music to heal herself and her family during that difficult time. She also donated stem cells and is credited with saving her dad’s life.
5. Nia walks the walk and has already tried to help foster a love of the arts in children and schools. While she was at college, she was a member of ArtistCorps, which works to place artists in public schools to help high-need students. Back home in New York she works with Success Academy Charters Schools and the non-profit organization Sing for Hope to help give children and students access to arts. No doubt the new Miss America will keep up the good work in this area, while fulfilling her musical dreams along the way!