Keonna was born and raised in Atlanta, GA. She graduated from Southern Wesleyan University in Central, SC majoring in Human Services and Media Communication. Keonna has a masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (Walden University) and an Educational Specialist degree in Educational Leadership (Northcentral University). She currently works as a certified educator at a local public charter school in the Western North Carolina (WNC) area.
Keonna competed in her first pageant as a freshman in high school. Defeated about not placing or winning any side awards, she did not compete in another pageant until adulthood. Pageantry is something that Keonna always wanted to do since childhood through being inspired by televised national pageant events. Keonna has successfully competed and won awards through the Miss South Carolina Plus America Pageant, Miss Sunburst Pageant, and American Beauties National Plus Pageant.
Keonna's passion for pageantry has shown over time and now she envisions using her tips, tricks, and knowledge to help those who may want to compete in their first pageant, improve skills in personal pageantry, or even want improved styling and/or interviewing tips. Keonna believes that pageantry is not just about winning a title, but being able to show confidence, grace, and poise by promoting women empowerment. Her favorite quote, by Harriet Woods is, "You can stand tall without standing on someone. You can be a victor without having victims."
Titles and Awards:
Miss Pickens County Plus America- 2016
Miss South Carolina Plus America- 1st Runner-Up
Miss Sunburst (Local Division Title)- 2015
Miss Sunburst- 1st Runner Up (State Title)
Mrs. North Carolina Classic Beauty- 2018
Prettiest Smile- Sunburst 2015
Prettiest Hair- Sunburst 2015
Best Personality- Sunburst 2015
Prettiest Eyes- Sunburst 2015
Most Photogenic- Sunburst 2015
2nd Place- Miss South Carolina Plus America Fashion Runway
Getting to Know Keonna:
1. What is your best part of pageantry?
I really enjoy the onstage portion of the competition. It feels like your energy changes once you step foot on the stage. Your heart is racing, but a smile approaches and you feel on top of the world!
2. Describe your first pageant experience.
My first pageant experience was in high school. I was really interested in pageantry, but I didn't have the confidence. I didn't have anyone to help me learn strategies for best onstage and interview experience. It was worth the try, but I felt really disheartened that I didn't place. If I had a coach, I would have felt more confident. I hope that I can be that person to someone going through the pageant experience!
3. Is getting a pageant coach worth it?
Absolutely! Every coach has been coached and I know that learning more about myself during the training process helped me develop my personality on and off the stage. It even gave me more confidence extending my platform and taking leadership on projects I would have never dreamed leading or taking a part of.