In Their Shoes: Miss Mississippi shows ranch life roots, prepares to take on nationals

CARRIERE, Miss. (WLOX) - Crowns, platforms, big hair and fancy dresses. When most of us think of beauty queens, we think of the glitz and the glam.

But on today’s “In Their Shoes,” we meet our reigning Miss Mississippi USA champion, Hailey White, as she prepares to go to nationals. It’s a small glimpse of her real ranch life behind the crown.

White grew up at Mill Creek Ranch, a 35-horse ranch started by her horse-training dad and veterinarian mom. She says she learned to ride as soon as she learned to walk, evident by her huge belt buckle verifying she won a regional championship when she was only 7 years old.

We get to meet her horse, Gun Smoke, as White tells us about her pageant platform. She says supporting small businesses and promoting youth entrepreneurship is something she’s passionate about.

“I grew up here helping both of my parents with their small business, my mom with her veterinarian practice and my dad with horse training,” White said. “And then me being a wedding planner now on top of all of this has just really shown me that America needs small businesses. They’re the backbone of our country, and it’s just so important to help them give back and really find ways to network.”

White hosts a networking event every year called Bosses and Bloggers, which brings together industry leaders and business owners.

When asked what the most common misconceptions are when it comes to pageants, White emphasized there’s so much behind the crown people don’t initially see.

“I think people see it as just a girl on stage, just wearing a dress, putting themselves out there, but it’s so much more,” White said. “The woman behind that glitz and glam- like I said, I’m a horse trainer, I’m a wedding planner. It’s just, multifaceted women do exist.”

The Miss USA pageant is coming up October 3, 2022, in Reno, Nevada. If you’d like to hear more about Hailey’s story and her upcoming trip, check out her interview on the 4 o’clock show coming up next Monday.

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WLOX Staff

WLOX Staff

Many of our stories aren't just researched and written by one journalist. They are collaborative efforts, identified by the WLOX Staff byline. An email sent to producers@wlox.com will go to the full WLOX news staff, including our newsroom managers.