Local News

Revels Selected To Compete In Miss World Pageant

Posted October 28, 2002 3:35 a.m. EST

— The North Carolina beauty queen who resigned after topless photos of her surfaced has been selected to represent the United States in the Miss World pageant.

Revels said she had been keeping the secret under wraps for almost a month.

"It was extremely hard to keep secret. I actually told a couple of people that I really trusted, but we had to maintain the secrecy because we didn't know how it would pan out and it was so hard. We were bursting at the seams," Revels said.

Revels, 24, won the Miss North Carolina title in June but resigned in July after the Miss America pageant received an e-mail indicating there were nude photos of her.

She unsuccessfully tried to reclaim the crown in court and was unable to compete in the Miss America pageant.

Revels' selection by the Miss World pageant will allow her to compete Dec. 7 in Nigeria against 119 women from around the world.

Barry Nakell, Revels' attorney, said the London-based Miss World Organization contacted Revels at the end of September about competing in its 2002 competition. He said Revels accepted the formal offer in early Oct. and is scheduled to leave for London on Nov. 9 and for Nigeria on Nov. 12.

"I am grateful for the opportunity to represent my state and my country in Miss World - the most glamorous and prestigious pageant in the world," Revels said.

The new Miss World wins $100,000 and spends the year traveling internationally. Even if Revels does not win, she will travel as the United States Representative for Miss World.

The Miss World pageant is not without its share of controversy. In 1973, Marjorie Wallace, of Indiana, won the Miss World crown, but was dethroned a short time later for not living up to the position. In 1986, actress Halle Berry represented the United States and drew a lot of attention for her choice of a swimsuit -- a bikini.

This year, Miss World contestants from a handful of countries are

boycotting the competition

over a death sentence an Islamic court has given a woman accused of adultery. Revels said she thought the group of women could make a stronger statement by going to the pageant.

"The current Miss World is from Nigeria. We need to support her," she said.

Nakell said he will pursue her court cases while Revels is gone. Because the State Pageant is not recognizing either Revels or Misty Clymer as Miss North Carolina right now, Nakell said there is no conflict with her competing in the international competition.

Since its inception, Miss World has raised hundreds of millions of dollars to fight hunger around the world.