10 Notable Beauty Pageant Moments


7

Say It Ain't So, Vanessa

Statuesque and articulate with a voice like an angel, Vanessa Williams was the darling of the 1983 competition and won the crown with ease, becoming the first black Miss America. But by July 1984, controversy had erupted. Penthouse magazine planned to publish nude photos of the beloved beauty queen without her consent, so she resigned. Williams was then replaced by runner-up Suzette Charles, also an African-American. The scandal didn't faze Williams for long; she went on to record several R&B albums and had a number one song in 1992 with "Save the Best for Last."