|Left to right: Paige (Kentucky), Sierra (New Mexico), Me, Boni (Oregon)|
The purpose of a Has Been is to be an ambassador of the Distinguished Young Women organization and make appearances that the current class can’t make. Also, part of the job of a Has Been is to act as a “big sister,” or a mentor, to not only the representative from our own state, but two other girls from states whose 2011 Distinguished Young Woman couldn’t be here, as well. Of course, I have Sierra Harland from New Mexico, and the two ladies that I have adopted for the week are Boni Yraguen from Oregon and Paige Wilson from Kentucky. I knew I would enjoy being a big to these amazing girls, but I had no idea the overwhelming emotions I would feel. The first time I saw each of them under the spotlight, a lump the size of the state of Alabama crept into my throat. I was actually so emotional about seeing my girls on the stage simply running through their fitness routines that I started to tear up! Unless you have actually participated in one of these programs it is hard to understand the level of difficulty it takes to be in this program. It may seem pretty cookey, but just seeing their intensity and determination just floored me. Nothing could have made me more proud today. I look so forward to seeing more about my passionate Sierra, talking more with spunky Boni, and getting to know sweet Paige more!
Rachel Williams is a college freshman at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico majoring in International Studies. Originally from Kirtland, New Mexico, Rachel was a participant in the Distinguished Young Women program and was selected as the Distinguished Young Woman of New Mexico for 2011. Learn more about Rachel here!