by Danielle Beard
Parsons, Kansas —
Recently Esther McCabe, of Elk City, Kansas, was crowned as the 2013 Miss American Angus at the North American International Livestock Exposition (NAILE) in Louisville, Kentucky.
McCabe is currently a freshman at Butler Community College. She plans on transferring to Kansas State University next fall to complete a degree in food science with a minor in animal science and industry, and from there apply to pharmacy school.
She is the daughter of Randy and Varee McCabe, and the youngest of four siblings, Flinton, Ethan and Hannah.
Leading up to being crowned Miss American Angus, McCabe has a long standing love and history with the Angus Association.
“As a third generation Angus enthusiast, I started showing cattle at age seven,” she said. “Then I began public speaking through the National Junior Angus Association.”
According to McCabe, being crowned Miss American Angus has been her greatest achievement so far within the Angus industry.
“It didn’t really hit me that I had won,” McCabe said. “I just heard my name and thought to step forward. It wasn’t until I looked up and saw my sister crying that it started to set in what was happening.”
McCabe explained that the application process to become Miss American Angus begins at the state level applying for scholarships.
“Once you are the boy or girl selected from your state for the scholarship, you go on to nationals,” she said. “I was selected in the top five at nationals, and from there they pick out the girls and ask who wants to run for Miss American Angus, and from there five girls are selected to run.”
Along with McCabe, the other young women competing for the title of 2013 Miss American Angus were, Kendra Merriman, Lowell, Mich.; Kayla Widerman, Good Hope, Ill.; Tylee Williams, Clarendon, Texas, and Emily Velisek, Gaithersburg, Md.
All five competing for the crown completed a written test, delivered a prepared speech, and participated in an interview with impromptu questions from a panel of judges.
Different experiences presented to McCabe throughout the Angus industry such as quiz bowl, cookoff and delivering speeches helped her prepare for the competition part of Miss American Angus, McCabe explained.
Her experience competing for this title taught her several lessons she hopes to pass on to next year’s applicants.
“My advice to future applicants is just be yourself, and more importantly, make friends with the girls who are there. There is only going to be one winner, and chances are it’s not going to be you, so you need to be able to walk away with something positive from the experience,” she continued.
McCabe said she is most excited about the opportunity to become more acquainted with other Angus breeders, as well as extend her industry knowledge, “but most importantly, I want to be a role model for younger girls in the industry and help them to build confidence and become involved,” she concluded.
The Miss American Angus contest was officiated by Susan Rhode, Gower, Mo.; Bud Smith, Russell Springs, Ky.; and Heather Shultz, Jefferson, Ga.
Visit www.angus.org for complete coverage of Angus events and shows.£