There She Is, Your Ideal... (well, it depends...)

posted by Mark Wainwright -

Gentlemen, Miss America may be YOUR ideal, but you might not necessarily be HERS. Yes, times have changed...

With all the recent attention given to the revised (no swimsuits, just personality and brains) Miss America "competition" -- don't you dare call it a "pageant" anymore -- I thought this little item would help illustrate how things are definitely changing:

Deidre Downs Gunn -- known as Deidre Downs when she was Miss America 2005 -- went on to a successful academic and professional career after her pageant (it was still a "pageant" then) win in Atlantic City. She graduated magna cum laude from Samford Univeristy, then received her MD from he University of Alabama School of Medicine in Birmingham. She became an OB-GYN specialist and is currently on the staff at the UAB Medical Center.

She married her college sweetheart and had a son in 2010. Sadly, the marriage broke down and they eventually divorced. Fortunately, she found love again several years later...

The new love of her life? Her name is Abbott Jones. That's right, "her name." Ms. Jones is an attorney with a law firm in Birmingham. Back in April, they were wed in a private, but well-attended (200+ guests) ceremony at the Birmingham Museum of Art. Both brides were lovely:


So we now finally have a gay Miss America.. at least, the only one we know about so far. Considering this whole Miss America thing has been going on since 1921, it's not unreasonable to think there might have been one or two others along the way, but I'm guessing we'll never find out.

Times have changed, indeed.

And, just for old times' sake, here was Deidre Downs at her triumphant moment:

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