Jenelle Hutcherson moved to Long Beach from Bakersfield about three years ago to work at The Den Salon. While talking with a client of hers, who directs the Miss Long Beach Pageant, Jenelle decided to compete. The pageant is this weekend.
Jenelle’s story has garnered considerable media attention. Jenelle has been covered in the OC Weekly and Los Angeles Times blogs, as well as the Huffington Post and Orange County Register. She breaks stereotypes and is spreading the message of diversity, creativity and equality. At GLAAD, we think telling these types of stories in the media is important. Jenelle will be a role model for other young LGBT folks to look up to.
I spoke to Jenelle yesterday, and she said, “I am running for Miss Long Beach and Miss California USA. I will be the first to wear a tux on stage. Also, this will be the first time someone who is openly lesbian this will represented in this pageant. I hope to bring a message of equality. As an artist in the beauty industry, I can appreciate every texture and color on my pallet. I believe true beauty is something we see every day and comes from within, and I will represent a variety of beauty on stage.”
Jenelle also mentioned the intense fundraising goals that she has, “I have to raise $1,800. to cover just registration for the Miss California USA in just the next two weeks.”