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Always smiling, Gardner-Brown voted by peers as Miss Congeniality

Miss Poulsbo Brenna Gardner-Brown, a Klahowya grad, shared Miss Congeniality honors with Miss Moses Lake Danielle Baker. - Photo by Jesse Beals
Miss Poulsbo Brenna Gardner-Brown, a Klahowya grad, shared Miss Congeniality honors with Miss Moses Lake Danielle Baker.
— image credit: Photo by Jesse Beals

It’s a rare occurrence to find Brenna Gardner-Brown without a smile on her face.

And as Miss Poulsbo, competing in this year’s Miss Washington competition, it was no different as she was all smiles as she won the Miss Congeniality award, voted on by her fellow contestants.

Gardner-Brown and Miss Moses Lake Danielle Baker tied for the award, each winning a trophy. As both of their names were announced Friday evening at the Champions Centre in Tacoma, Gardner-Brown bowed before her peers, thanking them for the honor.

Although her goal was to make it to the Top 10 in the competition, Gardner-Brown was ecstatic nonetheless.

“Top 10 was my goal, but Miss Congeniality made it all worthwhile,” she said with a smile after Friday’s event.

The Poulsbo native and 2005 Klahowya Secondary School grad is currently a sophomore at Western Washington University. While attending Klahowya she participated in the Running Start program at Olympic College, earning 40 college credits.

She is working on a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western and is planning to spend a semester studying abroad in Australia as part of college’s exchange program. She hopes to build a career as a marketing executive with an international company.

She calls her experience with the Miss Washington pageant “incredible.”

“You don’t realize the incredible girls Washington can produce,” she said.

She adds she has learned a lot about herself through the experience.

“Don’t leave anything off the table,” she said. “Show everyone your whole heart, they can take it or leave it.”

Gardner-Brown’s platform issue at the Miss Washington event was women in leadership positions — promoting awareness and involvement. In preparing for her Miss Washington platform, she met with Poulsbo Mayor Kathryn Quade on several occasions to discuss the process of putting focus on women mentoring women.

At the conclusion of last Friday’s event, Gardner-Brown was happy to see her teammate Miss Kitsap Kristen Eddings, Miss Poulsbo 2002, take home the top honor.

“She will be a fabulous Miss Washington,” she said. “She has the heart and the soul. She will probably be our next Miss America, if not in the Top 5.”

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