My incredible journey with National American Miss started in 2009 when I was just 15 years old. When my mom took me to the open call, I knew that this was a great organization. That year, I was called back as a state finalist and have been a part of this organization ever since! NAM has seen me in some of the most important years of my life: 15 (Jr. Teen), 17 (Teen), and 21 (Miss). National American Miss has taught me so much and has increased not only my love for public speaking, but also my self-confidence. I have made so many friends over the years through National American Miss state and national pageants and I am eternally grateful.
This year, my life changed forever as I was crowned your National American Miss Maryland 2015! It was a dream come true as the crown was placed on my curls and the letters of my beloved state of Maryland placed across my heart. Throughout my year as your Maryland miss queen, I was blessed to be featured on the front page of a newspaper, participate in Breast Cancer and Alzheimer’s Walks, and was VIP at NBC News in Washington, DC. At our national pageant, I was blessed to walk away as a national titleholder and becoming a two-time National Miss Academic Achievement titleholder! This award was by far my favorite award because it showed that hard work in school, truly pays off.
With National American Miss, I have been to the White House and on television featured as a guest co-host on the national daytime talk show, The Real, sharing a stage with Adrienne Bailon, Tamera Mowry, Loni Love, Jeannie Mai, and Tamar Braxton. I would have never dreamed that my experience would have been as great as this and to God I am truly grateful. Also, I realized that our NAMily exists anywhere I find myself, whether on the campus of my university or in the airport. I will truly miss this organization, as this was my final year with National American Miss.
Finally, my year as your reigning National American Miss Maryland 2015 has come to an end, but I will not stop here. What’s next for me? I’m glad you asked! In a few short weeks, I will embark on law school! As a first year law student, I will forever hold all that I have learned and experienced as I start this new chapter in my life. NAM will always be a part of me and I will strive to always be a part of NAM. I would like to thank God for this amazing life that He has blessed me with. To my Mom, thank you so much for every sacrifice that you made and for supporting my dreams. I love you! To my brother Gregory and forever escort, thank you for supporting me! I love you! To my sister queens Gabrielle, Sanjana, Brooke, Carissa, and Isabella, I love each of you so much and just know that I will always be your big sister. With tears in my eyes, I emphatically say farewell to National American Miss. For the last time, I am Danielle Hardy, your reigning Miss Maryland 2015. Je T’aime!