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Deidre Downs

Deidre Downs

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Deidre Downs is a beauty pageant contestant and winner of Miss America
Miss America
The Miss America pageant is a long-standing competition which awards scholarships to young women from the 50 states plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands...

 2005. She is from Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham is the largest city in Alabama. The city is the county seat of Jefferson County. According to the 2010 United States Census, Birmingham had a population of 212,237. The Birmingham-Hoover Metropolitan Area, in estimate by the U.S...

. As part of her year of service as Miss America, she campaigned for Curing Childhood Cancer. For her talent, she sang a rendition of the ballad "I'm Afraid This Must Be Love". Downs succeeded Miss America 2004 Ericka Dunlap
Ericka Dunlap
Ericka Dunlap is an American beauty pageant titleholder from Orlando, Florida who was named Miss Florida 2003 and subsequently crowned Miss America 2004. Dunlap was the first African American woman to be crowned Miss Florida....

 on September 18, 2004.

Downs is also the winner with the longest reign—excluding Mary Katherine Campbell
Mary Katherine Campbell
Mary Katherine Campbell was the only person to win the Miss America pageant twice. Campbell was Miss America 1922 and Miss America 1923, and she was also First Runner Up at the 1924 Miss America Pageant...

, who won the pageant twice in consecutive years—due to the pageant being switched from September to January. Her reign ended 490 days after her crowning on January 21, 2006, when Jennifer Berry
Jennifer Berry
Jennifer Berry-Gooden was crowned Miss America on January 21, 2006. A resident of Tulsa, Oklahoma, she was the fifth Miss America from Oklahoma to hold the title....

 succeeded her as Miss America 2006.

Downs attended Pelham High School
Pelham High School
Pelham High School is a public high school located in Pelham, Alabama. Part of the , Pelham was built in 1973 and opened in 1974. The school's mascot is "Paws" the Panther, and its colors are Forrest Green and Vegas Gold.- History :...

 in Pelham, Alabama
Pelham, Alabama
Pelham is a city and suburb of Birmingham in Shelby County, Alabama, United States. At the 2000 census the population was 14,369, but has grown to 21,352 recorded by the 2010 census. It was named for famed Confederate American Civil War officer John Pelham...

, a suburb of Birmingham. She started as an undergraduate at the University of Virginia
University of Virginia
The University of Virginia is a public research university located in Charlottesville, Virginia, United States, founded by Thomas Jefferson...

 (where she was a member of Alpha Chi Omega
Alpha Chi Omega
Alpha Chi Omega is a women's fraternity founded on October 15, 1885. Currently, there are 135 chapters of Alpha Chi Omega at colleges and universities across the United States and more than 200,000 lifetime members...

 sorority), becoming a member of the prestigious Jefferson Literary and Debating Society
Jefferson Literary and Debating Society
The Jefferson Literary and Debating Society is a debating and literary society at the University of Virginia. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest organization at The University and one of the oldest continuously existing debating societies in North America....

, before transferring to Samford University
Samford University
Samford University, founded as Howard College is a private, coeducational, Alabama Baptist Convention-affiliated university located in Homewood, a suburb of Birmingham, Alabama, United States. It includes the , Cumberland School of Law, McWhorter School of Pharmacy, Brock School of Business, Ida V....

, where she graduated magna cum laude with a degree in history. She was a Rhodes Scholar finalist, and played volleyball
Volleyball
Volleyball is a team sport in which two teams of six players are separated by a net. Each team tries to score points by grounding a ball on the other team's court under organized rules.The complete rules are extensive...

 while at Virginia. In 2010 she obtained her M.D. degree from the University of Alabama School of Medicine. She is currently a resident physician in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Alabama-Birmingham Medical Center.

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