” While some never got used to being in the public eye, others went on to make it their livelihood.On this page, we start with seven Miss Americas who, after their reigns, stayed in the national spotlight.The stage was too dark for the former Miss Alabama, who is deaf, to read the announcer’s lips, and she didn’t know when to walk across stage.Needing a cue, Whitestone turned to contestants beside her.” After her reign Mobley moved to New York City, studied acting with Lee Strasberg—financed by her scholarship money—and launched a showbiz career that would include movies, musical theater and 10 years as cohost (with actor husband Gary Collins, 62) of the Miss America pageant.Now living in Beverly Hills with Collins (daughter Clancy, 31, is a TV executive), Mobley, 63, wasn’t supposed to be an actress.In 1988 she kicked off her career as a recording artist.
“Frightened, overwhelmed and in shock,” as she told ENTERTAINMENT “WEEKLY, she found comfort with her publicist-turned-manager Ramon Hervey, with whom she had three children before they divorced in 1997.
Unwanted attention came in 1987, when she was tried—and acquitted—on conspiracy and other charges as a result of a political scandal.
Now 75, Myerson looks back on her reign with pride. “I won and I hadn’t changed my name.” 1995 HEATHER WHITESTONE The pageant audience didn’t notice, but Whitestone was in trouble.
The first Miss America with a physical disability, she has mixed emotions about her reign and the controversy she provoked.
“The deaf community criticized me for reading lips instead of signing,” says Whitestone, who lost her hearing in infancy due to a reaction to antibiotics.