Former Miss Americas and state directors for the Miss America Organization will help select its new leadership after an email scandal rocked MAO and led to the resignation of key leaders within the group.
Dan Meyers, the group’s interim board chairman, said in a statement to the Associated Press that the former Miss Americas and state directors will recommend four individuals to comprise a search committee, with the board choosing one former state title holder as the committee’s fifth member. The committee, which will also include two board members, will decide what form the new leadership structure should take and, once those decisions have been made, select individuals to fill the roles.
“The board wanted to have a process that was unprecedented in terms of openness, transparency and inclusion,” Meyers said. “Given the turbulent nature of leadership transitions, asking all the stakeholders to be a part of this process was the best way.”
The committee “will begin their exhaustive search in a matter of days,” a statement from the board read.
The former Miss Americas and state directors that will participate have not been named. MAO hopes to have the nominations for committee members by Jan. 3.
MAO CEO and executive chairman Sam Haskell was suspended and then resigned after internal communications describing former Miss Americas in vulgar and derogatory language were brought to light. In addition, board chair Lynn Weidner and COO and president Josh Randle stepped down, along with one other board member. Randle and Weidner’s resignations will become effective in a few weeks, leaving an additional two spots on the 14-member board — which already has two vacancies — to be filled.