By Debbie Hall

Using pageants to spread her message: Beauty inside

Brittany WilliamsBrittany Williams recently competed in the Miss United States pageant representing Nevada. While she did not win the title, she continues to inspire young women, especially in Southern Nevada, with her grace, intelligence, poise, education and, yes, beauty which radiates from the inside out.

Her platform is B.FabYOUlous, an organization that Williams created with a mission to inspire girls and young women to put the YOU in FabYOUlous from the inside out; creating their own identities, defining beauty for themselves, and celebrating who they are through mental and physical wellness first, accentuated by beauty and fashion. Through public speaking, workshops and mentoring; B.FabYOUlous empowers young women to make educated, healthy decisions while loving and living their lives to the fullest potential utilizing her 4 pillars: B.YOUtiful, B.Fit, B.Inspired and B.Glam.

Born and raised in Clifton Forge in southwest Virginia, Williams graduated from James Madison University with a Bachelors of Business Administration in Hospitality and Tourism Management. “A month after graduation, I was off to Las Vegas where I worked as a hotel operations intern at Caesars Palace. I was hired as a manager in food and beverage and moved to open and manage Qua Bath and Spa. Most of my hospitality career was spent at Caesars Palace. I also worked in food and beverage at Wynn and Encore and the Spa at Mandarin Oriental. A few years ago, I got my National Academy of Sports Medicine certification and most recently received my real estate license for Nevada.”

As for her pageant career, Williams explained, “It began in my senior year of college. On the surface, I wanted to try something new and step outside of the box since I was a tomboy my whole life. A little deeper however, my tough exterior was concealing a very insecure girl that didn’t like what she saw in the mirror. I thought hair, makeup, pretty dresses and a sparkly crown would change the way I felt about myself. When I didn’t win, I had to figure out a better way to deal with how I felt about myself. Over the past few years, I focused on understanding myself and how to love the person that I am. In working on this for myself, I realized that there are lots of young women who are suffering just as I was.”

According to Williams, studies have shown that 91 percent of women are unsatisfied with their bodies and their looks and are trying to achieve some arbitrary standard that is unrealistic. “When I became okay, I started helping girls do the same. Pageants became a platform to share that experience and to tell a story that people weren’t expecting to hear from me. Wearing a crown, there are lots of assumptions about who I am or what pageantry meant to me. It is fun to change perceptions of those who think they know everything based on stereotypes.”

Williams has found inspiration in Tyra Banks—supermodel, Harvard graduate and entrepreneur with a passion for helping young women build their confidence and see the good, bad and ugly of the modeling industry.

As Williams described herself, “I pride myself on being multi-dimensional. I have an alter ego. While I am usually The Queen B, I still am a tomboy at heart and have The Killer B side when it’s time to play sports, or in the gym. I was a college athlete, personal trainer, and have continued my training as I prepare for fitness competitions. I am truly a busy B with motivational speaking, modeling and building my platform of B.FabYOUlous.” Williams lives what she preaches and continues to set an example of true beauty.