WACO, Texas (KWTX) – A married mother of two in Central Texas has been crowned Mrs. Texas America 2021 and her road to the crown has been anything but conventional.
Ashley Beard, 34, of Waco, who sees herself more as an athlete than a beauty queen, says she never dreamed of wearing a crown, but took one home Saturday night at The Palace Theatre in Corsicana.
“It’s amazing to be able to be from a small little town like Waco and, especially, to represent Central Texas, but then to win the honors of representing the entire state is absolutely amazing,” Ashley said.
Mrs. Texas is the only Texas pageant dedicated to married women. Beard is married to Jody Beard and has two children, Jett, 8, and and Jael, 6.
The Waco mother did not grow up in the world of pageants. In fact, the self-proclaimed “soccer junkie” once played on the Sub-21 USA National Soccer Team and was a member of the Baylor Soccer team all four years of college.
Nowadays, she is a trainer and owns the Halo Athletic Center in Waco. It’s a journey which started almost by accident.
“I was eating this huge thing of ice cream while pregnant with my son and there was this show on television called ‘Chasing Crowns.’ They were all gorgeous on the inside, but I felt like horrible on the inside.”
Ashley felt that competing would not only help her loose those extra pounds from pregnancy, but give her a chance to prove that being a beauty queen is about much more than meets the eye.
In 2016, she competed for the first time in the Mrs. Texas America pageant and finished as the second runner up. She also finished second runner up in 2017 and 2018.
Ashley took 2019 and 2020 off before deciding to give it another shot this year.
Her determination paid off. “Perseverance is key,’ she said.
Ashley said it’s an honor to represent married woman everywhere and to show society that being married and being a mom doesn’t limit you, even in the scrutinized world of beauty.
“I think it’s absolutely amazing that we’re able to reach out to people in our community to show them – that as a Mrs. – we still have what it takes,” she said. “Also, that we’re able to compete in gown and fitness and interview and we’re able to refine ourselves.”
Ashley will be traveling the state in her new role as Mrs. Texas.
She will represent Mrs. Texas in the Mrs. America Pageant in November in Las Vegas and the winner of that will represent America in the Mrs. World competition sometime early next year.
Written by Julie Hays