Ms. Veteran America
Ms. Veteran America may appear to be a beauty pageant in the same mold as Miss America, Miss World, or similar events. But this contest is different in that it has a purpose far beyond the scope of the event itself; a private charitable organization called Final Salute, Inc. is the direct beneficiary of the contest in more ways than one.
The 2020 Ms. Veteran America competition will be presented via a virtual platform. The date(s) will stay the same, but in order to keep everyone safe, it’s best not to gather in groups at this time.
The yearly pageant includes regional contests and culminates in the main competition held in a different location every year. Ms. Veteran America has been operating every year since 2012.
Ms. Veteran America And Final Salute, Inc.
The mission of Final Salute, Inc. is to support homeless women veterans and their children; the winner of the pageant is expected to perform 100 hours of community service including work that raises awareness of the Final Salute mission and efforts to end veteran homelessness.
Individual competitors are asked to start crowdfunding campaigns to benefit Final Salute, Inc. as part of the contest. Ms. Veteran America also differs from other pageants or beauty contests in when it comes to who may compete.
Aside from putting military women front-and-center, the event includes a military spouse award called Mr. Mom recognizing those who support military women.
How The Ms. Veteran America Competition Works
The application process for Ms. Veteran America begins with an open season application period at the start of each year. The application period for 2019 was announced for the month of January, with entry fee price breaks for early registration; the 2019 contest application period was announced as being January through April,
There are regional competitions on both coasts ahead of the main contest; contestants may audition in person or virtually as part of the selection process.
hose who still serve may be required to get written permission from their command to participate; contestants serving in the Guard or Reserve may need to work around drill weekends or other required training to compete. The organizers of the competition require all currently-serving contestants to compete with the permission of the service member’s unit.
Eligible Contestants For Ms. Veteran America
Those eligible for the main competition to select Ms. Veteran America must meet the following requirements; these do NOT include age, height, or weight limitations.
Contestants must be:
A woman who is either a Veteran or still serving;
Able to show documentation of an Honorable discharge;
A veteran or currently serving military member who has completed the initial military service obligation unless the veteran was medically discharged;
In uniform for a minimum of 180 days of active service (above and beyond training requirements);
In good health;
Actively involved in the local community as a volunteer;
Able to adhere to a code of conduct.
Eligible Contestants For The Ms. Veteran America Mr. Mom Competition
The Ms. Veteran America Mr. Mom competition recognizes what the official site describes as “the husbands who have learned how to braid hair, are proud of their Soccer Dad titles, attend dance practices, finish the dishes, kiss boo boos, make dinner, hold down the fort and be everything his Warrior Wife needs him to be as she salutes the flag”.
Competition in the Mr. Mom category is open to husbands of eligible Ms. Veteran America contestants, plus other current military women and veterans.
To enter, a short video “of hubby in action” according to the official site, or a photo and short essay describing the nominee is required. Past winners of the Mr. Mom contest have included both fellow military members and civilian husbands alike.
How The Ms. Veteran America Contest Is Judged
There are four areas that are judged:
Scoring in these areas is affected by the contestant’s presentation. The official site says the following areas will count towards scores for each portion of the contest:
“Contestant activity, interaction, and participation”