Laramie is set to be represented on the national stage next year when University of Wyoming student Addison Treesh competes for the title of Miss USA.
Treesh, who grew up in Gillette, was crowned Miss Wyoming USA 2019 in September at Natrona County High School. Since then, she’s been preparing for the national competition and making appearances around the state.
The Miss USA Competition is scheduled to be aired by Fox Broadcasting Company in 2019, but the date and location have yet to be decided.
Treesh is a junior at UW who’s studying marketing and economics. She earned an associate’s degree in high school, so the 19-year-old is in her first year at UW and living in a dormitory on campus.
Her first foray into the pageant world came when she was 14, when she entered a competition for Miss Wyoming’s Outstanding Teen at the behest of her parents.
“It was basically my parents forcing me into it,” she said.
She won the competition and has been competing in pageants ever since.
“Winning that changed my life,” she said. “I’d be a completely different person right now if it wasn’t for that.”
Treesh described herself as a shy, self-conscious teenager who didn’t like talking to people.
“I couldn’t speak to an adult for the life of me,” she said.
As she started competing in pageants, however, she met new friends, learned how to share about herself and became comfortable giving interviews to strangers.
“I translated that into other parts of my life,” she said. “I open up to people more. I have a better time talking to adults, and my public speaking skills have gotten significantly better.”
Treesh competed in the Miss Wyoming Teen USA pageant during the past two years, placing third runner-up and first runner-up.
She was planning to compete in the teen competition again this year before learning she was a month too old. That meant she had to compete for Miss Wyoming USA instead.
“I didn’t expect to win, but I went into it with an open mind, and it was a crazy, fun experience,” she said.
She’s currently the youngest state titleholder, though a few states have yet to crown their winners. She’ll be competing against women up to 27 years old.
“It feels like I’m destined to compete young,” Treesh joked.
Treesh studied dancing for 15 years before quitting during high school to focus on DECA, a high school program for business and career training.
“From there I really figured out my passion for business,” she said.
She’s hoping to someday work in the fashion or beauty industries as a marketing or economic analyst.
Since winning the state title, Treesh has traveled to events around the state and the country while also preparing for the national competition. She was at Ivinson Memorial Hospital last Saturday for the Gingerbread Jamboree, for example, and said it’s one of the perks of the job.
“My favorite part is going to all the appearance, and meeting all the kids,” she said.
The Miss USA Competition requires state titleholders to be at their best. They are judged on a series of short interviews as well as swimsuit and evening gown categories. The national competition has taken place since 1952, and the winner will compete for the title of Miss Universe. In 2015, the pageant was purchased by WME/IMG from previous owner Donald Trump.
Treesh is planning to move back to Gillette for the spring semester to work, take classes online and work on her fitness, nutrition and interview skills.
“My plan is to come back (to Laramie) in the fall and hopefully graduate within the next two years,” she said.