For the first time in history, the Miss Tennessee is an African American. Brianna Mason, 23, has earned the crown and the title of Miss Tennessee 2019 making history in a year that had already seen many firsts.
Brianna, a Nashville native became the first African American woman to be crowned Miss Tennessee on Saturday. She entered the pageant as Miss Greene County, wowed judges with both her on-stage interview and performance of “Piano Fantasy” during talent preliminaries.
The 23-year-old is the first African American woman to win Miss Tennessee. It was her fourth time taking part in the competition. In a post-competition press conference, Mason spoke about her journey to becoming Miss Tennessee.
“I can’t even put into words how special that is, and I knew I was going to be emotional when thinking about this, but like I said I’ve been competing for so long, and there’s a Miss Tennessee room with portraits of all past Miss Tennessees and none of them looked liked me,” said Mason.
“And so I’ve made it my goal for the last couple of years to make sure my face gets up there not just for me, but for all of the young ladies who look like me and don’t think they can do it just because of their skin color … I’m here to tell you that it does not matter what your skin color is. It does not matter what your religion is. You can do anything that you want.”
After winning both her on-stage interview and talent preliminaries, Miss Greene County will be receiving a $15,000 scholarship. Mason will represent Tennessee at the upcoming Miss America Scholarship Competition.