Friday, December 14, 2007

Miss North Dakota USA Resigns

To be blunt, Miss USA fans have expressed some discontent with their class of 2007, but Miss North Dakota was an exception. Most everyone was elated when Bethany Nesheim was crowned. She is one of few beautiful blondes in a field largely comprised of brunettes (not that hair color matters, but people notice). However, I came home from my roadtrip to read rumors that she has resigned. The following was supposedly posted on her Facebook group:

DECEMBER 12, 2007: Relinquishing the title.

I officially relinquished the title today. I'm really feeling relieved and excited about it, though it was a hard decision to make. I'm not totally out of the boat yet as I have to wait on official acceptance from the Miss Universe Organization of my resignation. But I'm pretty excited to be 'regular Bethany' again as I've never truly enjoyed the limelight. I more just enjoy being part of bigger ventures and goals in life, doing things that get noticed rather than me directly being noticed.

Thank you all for joining in on this update group. I'm guessing dissapointment might be a common feeling for anyone who was pumped to see me on national TV. Yes, it would've been a big deal, but so are other commitments I've already made in life.

You see, I've committed two years to helping college students grow in faith and life decisions. The organization I'm with is listed officially as a 'missionary order' under the government, therefore having regulations most jobs don't. Those regulations, and my own personal convictions, don't mix with keeping this title.

To briefly describe my career: I get to see students live's changed for the better constantly as I watch them grow stronger in their faith and making positive decisions in life. For example, it's one of the most honoring things ever when I get to encourage a student coming out of a bad relationship, or help sort through the options as they seek to decide what job to take after graduation, or see them spend their spring break doing things like helping with Hurricane Katrina Relief.

I get to be part of teaching students to develop healthy dating relationships that lead into marriages with minimal chance of divorce. I get to pray with small groups about hard things they are going through with their families or in school. I get to rejoice when I see students find the right career niche that they were 'made' to do. And at the root of all this, I get to see them grow in faith and love of God.

Especially for all the younger student women I know, I already end up being watched as a 'role model.' Often I'm not aware of it when they are -- I tend to hear about it later and then feel surprised that I did anything that mattered. But I realize that how I conduct my life becomes very significant when girls who know me as their 'biblestudy leader' are watching what I do.

Though I know this title would've given me a lot of platform to influence many as a role model, I wouldn't have felt right knowing I'd be compromising many other areas of my life. It's an integrity thing on who I am and the faith I stand for.

This Sunday I'll be passing the crown to the first runner up -- a beautiful girl who is a friend of mine and former pageant competitor. Her name is Stephanie and she'll be wearing my fabulously-designed evening gown to nationals. I'm so excited to write to you next about how it goes and the further meaning of things behind it!....

In Love,
- bethany marie

On a side note, Bethany competed a few times for Miss North Dakota (America). Her First Runner-up at Miss North Dakota USA is Stephanie Tollefson [right], also a former MAO competitor.


  1. If this girl was so committed to her other job, why on earth did she even compete? Something isn't right here.

  2. I totally agree! This was at least her third try at a state crown, so she knew what she was getting into... it's not like a girl winning on her first try, only to find she's in over her head.

    I think there must be more to the story that we're not hearing. I've read the ND USA directors aren't very good... of course you hear that about every state in every pageant system! lol!


  3. Hello Anonymous & Abby,

    I had started a job out of state, though my most permanent residency had still been at home in North Dakota. With my job, I would've had to give it up or put it off to keep the crown. I honestly didn't realize beforehand how complex the situation would be with both my job requirements, and the requirements of the Miss USA Organization. This Facebook note does truthfully share the roots of my decision.

    Thanks. Apologies for the confusion.
    - Bethany Nesheim

  4. Bethany,

    Thank you so much for taking the time to respond to my blog entry. I’m sure this is a very difficult time for you and I wish you the best of luck in your future!



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