Photo: Goodwin Photography

BRISTOL, VA. On Friday, July 5, 2019, Elissa Taylor of Virginia was crowned Ms. Cosmos United States 2019.

Born in Queens, New York and raised in Fredericksburg, Virginia, Taylor has always had a passion for living life and helping others to attain their dreams. Diagnosed with juvenile diabetes (also known as Type 1 diabetes) at the age of 10-months, her parents were told that due to the delay in diagnosis, she would either pass away or live a life with severe brain damage–unable to walk, talk or even recognize their faces. Instead of allowing the diagnosis to negatively impact her life, her parents encouraged her to follow any dream that she had and set goals that even she thought would be unattainable. Instead of being discouraged, Taylor used her circumstances as the catalyst behind all of her life’s successes.

Taylor graduated in 2012 from James Madison University (Harrisonburg, VA) and went on to work for the Air Force Association (Arlington, VA) in the position of Field Coordinator, where she had the opportunity to manage all aspects of Field Operations, serving as the primary contact for all field leaders and volunteers, providing leadership and support to a grassroots network of over 250 international chapters. More recently, she has worked for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, managing their Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD locations.

Currently, Taylor resides in Montgomery Village, MD with her fiancé, Fredy, son, Brycen, and three rescue dogs. As the City of Gaithersburg’s (Gaithersburg, MD) first full-time Sponsorship Program Administrator, Taylor raises funds for many of the events that the City provides free-of-charge to residents. In her free time, she enjoys not only assisting her clients through her small business and pageant consulting company, Crowned Coaching and Consulting, but also raising her son and obtaining her MBA from the University of Maryland.

Taylor will now go on to the Ms. Cosmos International Pageant to compete for the international title in Runaway Bay, Jamaica.

In addition to her win, Taylor won the State Costume competition.

Rounding out the Top 4 are:

3rd runner up: Buffy Bays of Tennessee

2nd runner up: Shana Mitchell of Florida

1st runner up: Tanya Topazio of North Carolina

Our Photogenic winner is Kawai Anakalea of Hawaii who also won the Optional Talent Competition and was named Miss Congeniality.  People’s Choice was awarded to Buffy Bays of Tennessee.  The Optional Runway Competition went to MaQuitta Butler of South Carolina.