Saturday, June 28, 2008

DBC Named Miss Colorado 2008 

Posted by Sasha at 5:11 PM ET

A Crowning Achievement
By Jake Grilley
June 26, 2008

ENGLEWOOD, Colo.-- As a Denver Broncos Cheerleader, Jamie Dukehart-Conti knows the importance of accessories. What would the Broncos Cheerleaders be without pom poms and cowboy boots? Last weekend Dukehart-Conti earned two other accessories, a sash and a crown.

She is Miss Colorado 2008, and the newly-crowned pageant winner is still trying to grasp the actuality of achieving her dream.

"It was so exciting," Dukehart-Conti said of being named this year's Miss Colorado. "It was the same when my name was called at Broncos additions for the first time. When you hear your name called it is kind of overwhelming. It takes a few days for it to sink in."

This was Dukehart-Conti's third year competing at Miss Colorado. She placed fourth overall each of the previous two years.

Instead of letting her finishes get her down, Dukehart-Conti saw not being named Miss Colorado as another opportunity and more time to become involved and prepare.

She used her title as Miss Denver and later as Miss Broomfield to invest her time and efforts to the community. Dukehart-Conti was heavily involved in promoting and organizing the Red Ribbon Week campaign, a program geared towards promoting a drug-free lifestyle to elementary and middle school students.

Over the past year both as a Broncos Cheerleader and Miss Denver, Dukehart-Conti volunteered over 1700 hours of community service.

"It was a really great opportunity and experience," she said. "It really demonstrates that you are invested in the organization and the community."

Dukehart-Conti is quick to dispel notions that Miss Colorado is strictly a beauty pageant.

"The swimsuit component and beauty factor are parts of the competition but that is just one component of the competition," she said. "I spent a lot more time on my community service than I did on my swimsuit walk. It is just part of of it. It is a total package and there are so many things that we do."

Part of her responsibly as pageant contestant and now as Miss Colorado is serving as a role model to young girls.

"I love children and I love being able to interact with them," she said.

Children are an integral part of Dukehart-Conti's life. When she isn't spending her time as a nanny, the Colorado State graduate with a certificate in elementary education helps to instruct kids through the Denver Broncos Junior Cheerleaders and the Miss Colorado Princess Mentoring Program.

As Miss Colorado Dukehart-Conti plans on continuing her efforts in promoting drug free awareness. In addition she will focus on advocating the organization's platform the Children's Miracle Network, an organization established to help fund improvements to medical facilities and healthcare for children, and her own personal platform of Investing in Miracles Changing Lives with Change, focused on gathing small donations in an effort to help enrich children's lives.

The exposure of being a Broncos Cheerleader in addition to being Miss Colorado brings with it opportunities that Dukehart-Conti is excited to embrace.

"I am so excited about what the partnership will be able to bring," she said. "I am so lucky to have so many great partnerships established between both organizations. Both organizations will open doors for each other."

Dukehart-Conti said she couldn't ask for a more supportive group of women than her fellow cheerleaders.

"Everyone has been so supportive and excited for me," she said. "They know that I have been involved and working for this for the entire year and it wasn't something I just did on a whim. They understand what having the title entails."

Dukehart-Conti will be representing both the Broncos and Colorado at the national level when she participates in the Miss America reality television series which will begin taping in September and October and during the Miss America Pageant in January.

And although her life now has added responsibilities and obligations to fulfill as Miss Colorado, Dukehart-Conti isn't forgoing her responsibilities as a Broncos Cheerleader.

"I am committed to the team 110 percent," she said. "I'll be out there on the sidelines."

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