By WVUA 23 Student Reporter Molly Katherine Walsh

A Tuscaloosa native was recently crowned Miss Alabama 2017 and she cannot wait to get started on life after the pageant.

Jessica Procter is a University of Alabama student who created her own major through the New College and focused on studies related to music and psychology. She was raised in Tuscaloosa along with her two older sisters and her family remained close through their bond in their faith and their shared love of music. In high school Jessica began to look into college options and decided to enter a pageant which she did not win but decided it was still something to pursue.Her family supported her through her Miss Alabama journey and that meant a lot to Procter.

“They’re the busiest people I know but they love people so well and they love me so well,” Procter said. “I was so overwhelmed by how much I could tell that they were feeling success through my success.”

Part of her platform is her service is Step Up to the Plate which is an organization that partners with the West Alabama Food Bank to serve food to those in need. Over the past four years she has helped to collect over 65 thousand pounds of food which adds up to about 79 thousand meals.

“My favorite thing we do is called ‘Fifth Quarter’ where we stay after every football game, basketball game, gymnastics meet all collect all the leftover food from the north zone, the south zone and they sky boxes and all the other areas. They’re able to distribute that to the community within the next 24 hours,” Procter said.

Procter also enjoys spending time at church and singing whenever she can. She impressed judges with her impressive vocal talents in every single one of her pageants, but she believed that what truly won her the crown was just being unapologetically Jessica.

Her next stop will be Birmingham, Alabama where she will live in the Miss Alabama apartment for a year while she fulfills her duties of service throughout the state. Procter has won over $42 thousand in scholarship money through her pageants and she intends to eventually go to graduate school with that money. Before graduate school, she will compete for the title of Miss America against the other winners of their respective states.

“There’s so much more that you get out of it,” Procter said. “It betters you in literally every way. The life skills gained, friendships, and ability to public speak  and to never meet a stranger. The list goes on.”

Categories: Alabama News, Community, Local News