August 18, 2010

NAMiss California, Amanda Starrantino, Newspaper Article

Check out the article that was just published about your 2010 National American Miss California Teen, Amanda Starrantino. There are some GREAT pics of her practicing ice skating down below. Here's the link to the original article:

NAM CA Teen Queen Amanda StarrantinoWhat Amanda Starrantino remembers well is being “painfully shy.” She was a figure skater at a young age and loved performing, “but not talking to people. I was pretty awkward,” said the 18-year-old Simi Valley resident.

In her early teens, however, Starrantino set some goals. “I always wanted to be a broadcast journalist and I knew I’d have to come out of my shell,” she said.

With her mom and dad’s encouragement, she joined the National American Miss organization and began to compete in pageants. “I still have the video of my first one four years ago,” she said. “It’s awful. It could be on ‘America’s Funniest Home Videos.’ ”

A recent graduate of Chaminade College Preparatory High School in San Fernando Valley, Starrantino kept plugging away, competing in pageants and working on her poise and performance. The hard work paid off and on Aug. 8 at the Anaheim Marriott hotel. Escorted by her friend and classmate Ben Bryan, Starrantino was crowned Miss California Teen at the National American Miss Pageant. She will compete for the national title on Nov. 22 in Anaheim.

“I’ve been working for this for a long time,” Starrantino said. “I wanted to break out of my shyness and being part of American Miss really did help.”

Starrantino credits the organization with teaching her to speak to an audience and to organize her thoughts clearly. Combined with her recent status as a professional figure skater — Starrantino skates nearly every day — she believes she’s well on her way to accomplishing her goal. “I was accepted into Chapman University’s film school and I’ll start there in the fall,” she said.

The American Miss pageants require contestants to participate in four categories: personal interview, personal introduction, evening wear and community involvement.

“My platform is cancer awareness,” said Starrantino. “I’ve lost some very good friends to the disease and so I got involved with the Avon and Revlon walks against breast cancer and I’ve been asked to be a spokesperson at the Avon walk in Santa Barbara.”

Her friend and Chaminade classmate, Susie Beazley, died of cancer in January. “It was so hard, and I think of her every day,” Starrantino said. “It brought all of us friends closer together and about 20 of them were at the pageant when I won. It meant so much.”

Starrantino’s speech is called, “I believe in pink,” a phrase she adopted from Audrey Hepburn. “It’s really a speech about believing in yourself and respecting who you are,” she said. “I want to be a positive role model. There’s so much that little girls can get into that just isn’t right. I want to keep them from that and show them there’s more.”

© 2010 Ventura County Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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