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Covington’s Hannah Edelen, 24, crowned Miss Kentucky; will compete in Miss America pageant


By Judy Clabes
NKyTribune editor

Hannah Edelen, 24, a Springfield native, Covington resident, and public school teacher, was crowned Miss Kentucky in the scholarship pageant held last week in Bowling Green.

She will represent Kentucky at the Miss America pageant in Connecticut in December, where her social impact initiative or platform will be called “Read Ready Kentucky.”

Miss Kentucky photo by Rob Metzger Photography

Edelen was a sixth-grade teacher in the Covington Independent Schools and was ready to teach in Campbell County schools this fall. But her Miss Kentucky duties will mean she will take the year off from teaching and serve as the spokesperson for Kentucky Proud, the state’s agricultural marketing program.

Edelen graduated in 2021 from NKU with a bachelor’s degree in communication and history and minors in Organizational Leadership and Honors, the first in her family to graduate for college, and is currently a doctoral student in Education Policy and Evaluation at the University of Kentucky.

She is also a candidate for the board of education of the Covington Independent Schools.

Coming from an impoverished family background in Springfield, Edelen distinguished herself at Northern Kentucky University. She was president of the Student Government Association, was a student Regent, and was the first-ever Presidential Fellow under the leadership of Dr. Ashish Vaidya in the Office of the President. She was also a Residential Assistant (RA), an Orientation Leader, and a member of Kappa Delta Sorority. At the 2021 graduation program, she shared the story of her road to success in the midst of incredible challenges.

As a student, she also worked at the city, state, and federal level within government as a Covington Communications intern, a state General Assembly Intern, and Public Policy Congressional intern.

During her senior year, she applied and was accepted to Teach for America in the Southwest Ohio region.

“My passion is grounded in helping increase equity within Kentucky education and creating educational opportunities where all students can succeed,” she wrote as a student. “During my Honor’s capstone, I learned more about the vast inequities that exist within the state.”

As a teacher, she was also a mentor with Covington Partners and a key volunteer in the Read Ready Covington literacy initiative.

Edelen said she was influenced by “one incredible teacher who believed in me deeply,” and that changed her life.

“I want EVERY child to have access to a high quality education, equitable resources, and strong mentor programs,” she said.

Hannah’s personal message on Instagram:


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