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Brewton native crowned as Miss Alabama, to compete in September

By By Robert Blankenship
Special to The Advance
A dream has come true for Brewton native Catherine Crosby as she was crowned Miss Alabama Saturday night in Birmingham.
After four days of competing in four categories with 49 other contestants, Crosby took over the role as Miss Alabama and was crowned by 2002 Miss Alabama Scarlotte Deupree. In addition to winning the title of Miss Alabama, Crosby also earned $11,000 in scholarship money.
"I am still trying to figure it all out," Crosby said. "I was very excited and shocked and I couldn't be happier."
The 1998 T.R. Miller High School graduate earned the right to compete in the pageant after claiming the title of Miss Homewood Area – a pageant that serves as a preliminary to Miss Alabama.
Crosby's parents, Ann and Larry Crosby, are residents of Brewton and said they share in the joy that their daughter is experiencing.
"It was unreal," Ann Crosby said. "We were in total shock, but very thrilled."
The pageant was made up of four categories – interview, talent, evening wear and swimsuit. The pageant begins on Wednesday and the field of 50 was narrowed to only 10 on Saturday when the finalists compete once again in the same categories and are narrowed to the top five. Crosby and the other four finalists were then asked two questions – one about their career choice and the other about their platform.When it was all said and done Crosby came out on top over first runner-up Deidre Downs, 22, of Birmingham.
Ann Crosby said the competition at this year's pageant was tough.
"She competed against 49 wonderful girls and the talent was incredible," she said. "The competition was so tough that we didn't know if she would make the top ten."
Crosby said she finished in a tie for first place in the interview competition, but did not know where she stood on the other events. She performed as a flutist in the talent competition.
Crosby learned that her life as Miss Alabama began as soon as she put on the crown. She has already been busy with appearances and speaking engagements. On Monday, she traveled to Montgomery and spoke on the floors of the House of Representatives and Senate.
A big part of her appearances will be to promote her platform – "First Vote: America's Freedom to Choose."
"It is an educational tool that explains to students the importance of voting and good citizenship," she said. "It allows them to register to vote and helps them be more informed and active citizens."
As Miss Alabama, Crosby will be available for speaking engagements at schools, civic club meetings, churches and will be available to perform her talent at various functions.
Crosby graduated from Auburn University in 2002 with a bachelor's of art degree in history. She has been living in the Birmingham area for about one year.
By winning the Saturday night competition, Crosby qualifies to compete in the Miss America contest in Atlantic City, N.J., in September.
Crosby was a semifinalist in last year's Miss Alabama pageant and is a former Escambia County Junior Miss.
Crosby said she is planning to return to Brewton some time in August.