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Who Are the Top 10 Beauty Pageant Veterans

There have been so many winners of so many different beauty pageants across the nation since this American tradition began, but only a handful of them have gone on to achieve long-lasting fame. These 10 beauty pageant veterans have been able to use those early competition experiences to pursue lasting, successful careers in the public eye, which makes them the top beauty pageant veterans of our time. Some of the names in this list may surprise you! Halle Berry
She may be most famous for her emotional Oscar acceptance speech, but before becoming an actress, Halle Berry was famous as Miss Ohio and first runner-up to Miss USA in 1986. Gretchen Carlson
Fox & Friends co-host Gretchen Carlson won the Miss America competition in 1989 and used the scholarship prize to attend Stanford’s journalism program. Mary Hart
She’s best known for having hosted Entertainment Tonight for an incredible 29 years, but Mary Hart got her start as Miss South Dakota. She was a participant in the Miss America race in 1970. Sarah Palin
The infamous Republican vice-presidential candidate got her start in the spotlight as a third-place finisher in the 1984 Miss Alaska competition. She did manage to win Miss Congeniality. Katy Perry
This famous California Girl started out in pageants as a youngster, but as she entered her teens, she focused almost exclusively on her singing career. Diane Sawyer
She may be an esteemed journalist known for gut-wrenching tales of famine and disease in third-world countries, but Diane Sawyer started her climb to fame as America’s Junior Miss in 1963. Blake Shelton
Most pageant veterans are female, but country music star and former judge of “The Voice” Blake Shelton broke that stereotype. His mom used to enter him as a male model in pageants for girls. Sharon Stone
Sharon Stone was first “discovered” in a 1976 Miss Crawford County pageant in Meadville, Pennsylvania. She moved to New York City to pursue a modeling career in 1977, based on the advice of a pageant judge. Vanessa Williams
Questionable photos surfaced after Vanessa Williams became the first African-American to be crowned Miss America in 1984, after which she resigned and became a successful pop star. Oprah Winfrey
The Queen of Talk started out as a Miss Black Tennessee winner at age 18, long before she became a journalist, world-famous talk-show host and one of the wealthiest woman in the world.

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