Miss USA — a DEI proponent — resigns crown, citing her ‘mental health’

News & Politics

The Miss USA organization says it will now have to undergo a “transition of responsibilities” after the reigning Miss USA has elected to resign.

Last September, Noelia Voigt of Utah was crowned Miss USA. Two months later, she went on to represent the U.S. at the Miss Universe pageant in El Salvador, where she cracked the top 20.

“Prioritize your mental health.”

However, on Monday, just eight months into her reign, Voigt announced on Instagram that she was resigning the crown, ostensibly to care for her “mental health.”

“Deep down I know this is just the beginning of a new chapter for me,” she wrote in part, “and my hope is that I continue to inspire others to remain steadfast, prioritize your mental health, advocate for yourself and others by using your voice, and never be afraid of what the future holds, even if it feels uncertain.”

In a message accompanying the post, Voigt, 24, admitted that the news would likely “come as a large shock to many.” “Never compromise your physical and mental well-being,” she continued. “Our health is our wealth.”

Claudia Michelle, a former social media director for the Miss USA organization, noted in her resignation letter posted to Instagram last Friday that she likewise observed a “decline” in Voigt’s mental health recently. “I feel like her ability to share her story and her platform have been diminished,” Michelle claimed.

Voigt, who survived childhood cancer and later attended the University of Alabama, competed in state pageants four times total. The first three times, she won first runner-up. Despite those setbacks, she ran once again and won Miss Utah in April 2023.

“It could have been very easy for me, all those times getting first runner-up, to just say, ‘I can’t do this anymore, I’m so frustrated,'” she said in October. “But instead, every time I got first runner-up, it was more fuel to the fire for me to keep on going. And I think that hard work really paid off.”

As part of mental wellness, Voigt made “anti-bullying” a focus of her advocacy during her brief time as Miss USA. She also drew significant attention to her background as a first-generation American, noting in her Instagram announcement that she was “the first Venezuelan-American woman to win Miss USA.”

Perhaps because of her background, she likewise championed “immigration rights and reform,” according to her statement, as well other leftist causes, including DEI. Just weeks after her Miss USA victory, she told People: “Miss USA is a symbol of unity and diversity and inclusivity.”

“If the United States is going to call themselves the land of opportunity and a place where you can achieve the American dream,” she added, “… Miss USA should be able to represent all of them.”

The Miss USA organization issued a statement following Voigt’s resignation. “We respect and support former Miss USA Noelia Voigt’s decision to step down from her duties,” a spokesperson said.

“The well-being of our titleholders is a top priority, and we understand her need to prioritize herself at this time. The organization is currently reviewing plans for the transition of responsibilities to a successor and an announcement regarding the crowning of the new Miss USA will be coming soon.”

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