Ashtabula native Sydney Gilbert, 18, was crowned Miss Ohio on Dec. 11 at the Miss American Girl Miss Ohio pageant in Columbus. According to the website, this Miss American Girl Pageant is brought out to encourage positive development among girls and women through constructive and age-appropriate competition.

In one of her interviews Gilbert said “I completed an interview, evening gown competition, and fun fashion runway,” She also added “There was also 10 percent given for sportsmanship. I was also awarded Miss Congeniality by the other contestants. This year I will represent Ohio to the best ability and give back to my community during my year-long reign.” 

This was not the first time when Gilbert has taken part in a pageant event. She has been participating in pageants since she was just 5 years old. She started her journey with the Geneva Winterfest pageant in 2019, when she was crowned queen. After that Gilbert stated that “I was crowned Miss Ohio Junior Teen in 2020, and moved right on up to Miss Ohio,” she added to this “I actually own my own business — Crowned to Perfection, where I am a pageant/confidence coach with over 50 clients from all over the U.S.”

“Because of the community evolvement, Gilbert likes the Miss American Girl pageants the most”, said her mother Angela Ponteri of Ashtabula. She also added that “Giving back is such a huge part of the pageantry, and growing a sisterhood and being a role model to younger kids,” and “With Sydney’s ambition to be a kindergarten teacher, this system is perfect for her. My daughter is a magnet to kids, and she radiates when she is surrounded by them”, said Angela Gilbert’s mother.

Gilbert said, “Representing Ohio truly means everything to me.” She also added, “This year I will serve my community to the best ability and spread positivity and empowerment through photography, community service, and being me.”

Shyma Mansur

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