UK student crowned Miss Kentucky USA 2023

Photo provided by Madalyne Kinnett

Photo provided by Madalyne Kinnett

Rana Alsoufi, Reporter

University of Kentucky student Madalyne Kinnett won the Miss Kentucky USA competition on Saturday, Feb. 25, 2023.

Fifty-four contestants competed this weekend for the title of Miss Kentucky USA in Somerset, Kentucky, at The Center for Rural Development, where Kinnett represented Greater Lexington. The preliminary competition took place on Friday, Feb. 24, with the final show and crowning occurring the following day. 

The 21-year-old winner is a senior at UK and is double majoring in merchandising, apparel and textiles and business marketing.

“Words cannot describe how excited and grateful I am for the opportunity to represent my state this year,” Kinnett wrote in an Instagram post following her win. “I have dedicated so many years competing for this organization and I am truly too blessed and thankful to be apart (sic) of this sisterhood.”

Kinnett previously competed in three separate Miss Kentucky Teen USA competitions, placing in the top five each year. She placed third runner-up in 2020, second runner-up in 2019 and fourth runner-up in 2018.

“I am so thankful to all my coaches, mentors, family and friends who believed in me and pushed me to be the best version of myself,” she said. “I lost my mom when I was 13 years old and I asked her to be with me on that stage all weekend and to give me the confidence to put my all into it, so I dedicate my win to her. I just wish she was there to see it herself.”

Kinnett will go on to compete for the title of Miss USA 2023 later this year in Reno, Nevada, where she has the opportunity to be the third titleholder from the state of Kentucky if she wins. Previous Kentucky winners include Elle Smith (2021) and Tara Conner (2006).