A 23-year-old Hershey High graduate and law student at the University of Nebraska enters the beauty industry as she competes for the title of Miss Nebraska America on June 12.
The annual Miss Nebraska scholarship competition will be held in North Platte from June 10-12.
Lincoln County Public Defender’s lawyer Katie Leu Hoatson is using pageantry to change the way society views beauty, she said in a press release.
Hoatson almost underwent weight loss surgery at the age of 16.
“I was a few moments away from having it and the doctor said to me, ‘You know, I just don’t feel comfortable with this because you’re so young,’” Hoatson said. “And at the time, I was really devastated. I honestly thought it was okay to have an operation. I was like, ‘You know, taller people have surgery to lose weight and that fixes it.’ “
Hoatson later said that she did what 50% of young girls did, resorted to unhealthy dietary restrictions to lose weight, which resulted in her getting sick and almost unable to walk to class.
“I was using unhealthy weight control behaviors and every time I ate I felt guilty. I felt like I was a bad person, ”she said. “It was the first time I really started to lose weight, but it wasn’t healthy, but the world was applauding my self-destruction. And all my friends, all the adults in my life were like, “Go ahead, Katie, you’re doing so well, you’re so healthy, you’re doing this for yourself.” I have never felt so unhealthy in my life. I couldn’t even go up a flight of stairs. I knew then that the injustice felt by plus-size people in society had to be addressed. Then “Courageous with Confidence” was born. “
Hoatson graduated from Hershey High School in 2016. Her goal is to destroy the standard of beauty, promote health at all sizes, and eating disorder awareness. She also hopes to show other young girls that beauty is not a size.
“I’ve been in the top 5 of other national contests before and always thought that my public speaking or my social impact was what would have inspired young girls, and it is, but this still shocks me when little girls come to see me afterwards. and say, “Just being here, just looking at someone who looks like me, made such a big difference,” Hoatson said.
Considered a plus-size contender and a signed model by Gaia Models, Hoatson has also received a number of unfavorable comments.
“In our society, we treat people of higher weight like they’re lazy and disgusting, like it’s a problem with self-control,” she said. “But the truth is, low weight bodies have these problems too. Low weight bodies run out of steam, have high blood pressure, have high cholesterol, and can go to the doctor and get medication for it. A person who is heavier will be told to lose weight, which we believe has a 95% failure rate. Eighty percent of women have cellulite, but only 0.1% have a law degree – what if that’s something we applaud? “
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