Karen Ocamb

Lesbians Make History as Contestants for Miss California USA

Filed By Karen Ocamb | January 10, 2012 3:15 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, Living, Marriage Equality
Tags: beauty pageant, lesbian beauty queen contestants, Miss California

What a long, long way from Religious Right Miss California runner-up Carrie Prejean! This year, the Miss California USA pageant featured TWO openly gay contestants seeking that coveted crown – West Hollywood’s Mollie Thomas and Long Beach hairstylist Jenelle Hutcherson.

“My first big coming out on stage was in my swimsuit,” Thomas told KNBC TV. “I did a lot of prep for that, a lot of working out.”

From KNBC:

Neither contestant winded up winning the pageant. That honor went to Natalie Pack, 22, a University of California Irvine junior who has already made her mark as a model.

But in truth, Thomas and Hutcherson had different goals.

This was, after all, the same competition where Carrie Prejean made headlines two years ago by speaking out against same-sex marriage. Thomas and Hutcherson wanted to send the opposite message.

“I got up there to make me happy,” says Hutcherson. “I got up there to influence these kids that I work with as a mentor, to be themselves, to be who they are and see how the world reacts.”

“Being who you are and being true to yourself and being a strong woman rather than being your stereotypical beauty pageant girl,” is how Thomas saw her role.

Thomas says she had such a good time, she’s planning to compete again next year. And in true Hollywood fashion, she already has an entourage. They call themselves, “Team Mollie.”

Video after the break.

View more videos at: http://nbclosangeles.com.

And here’s Jenelle Hutcherson:

View more videos at: http://nbclosangeles.com.

(Crossposted at LGBT POV)

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