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July 7, 2006

S.D. Wins Second Consecutive Miss Deaf America Title

From: CSD - Jul 7, 2006

For immediate release ...
PRESS ANNOUNCEMENT Release Date: July 7, 2006
Contact: Rick Norris
CSD Communications Office

S.D. Wins Second Consecutive Miss Deaf America Title

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — South Dakota continued its winning streak when Chelsea Tobin was crowned Miss Deaf America 2006-08 on July 3. Nineteen-year-old Tobin, of Pierpont, beat out 26 other young women from across the country, clinching back-to-back wins for the state.

The pageant is a program of the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) and part of their biennial conference, which was held this year in Palm Desert, Calif. Deaf women between 18 and 28 compete to become the spokeswoman for the NAD, representing over 28 million deaf and hard of hearing Americans. The competition is comprised of four areas: private and on-stage interviews, talent, and a platform presentation.

“South Dakota sent its best to the competition,” said Tom Kober, South Dakota Association of the Deaf president. “(She) will be an outstanding ambassador for the deaf community in America. (She) worked hard for this — in personal development and in teamwork with her committee.”

Tobin was crowned by Miss Deaf America 2004-06 Erin Casler, who represented South Dakota in that biennial competition (and has since moved to the Washington, D.C. metro area). The state also had a strong showing in the 2002-04 national pageant, when Sioux Falls native Paula Souhrada was named first runner-up.

From early on, it was evident that Tobin was a strong contender for the crown. She tied for “Best Platform Presentation” in the first preliminary competition and tied again in the second preliminary for “Best Talent.” Her group competed in eveningwear for the third — and final — preliminary. While that score does count for determining who moves on to the finals, the category does not have a “best of” award.

Currently a deaf education major at Augustana College, Tobin plans to attend Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. this fall as a “visiting student.” She also will now embark her two-year reign, during which she will juggle attending school and touring the nation speaking to diverse groups as the NAD’s goodwill ambassador.

Tobin is available for interviews and personal appearances. For more information, contact Jennifer Yost Ortiz, Youth Programs coordinator, at NAD Headquarters in Silver Spring, Md. (

About the South Dakota Association of the Deaf (SDAD) – SDAD, an affiliate chapter of the National Association of the Deaf, is the oldest and largest consumer organization of, for and by deaf and hard of hearing people in South Dakota. SDAD is committed to empowering and enriching the deaf and hard of hearing community by increasing opportunities conducive to a self-sufficient, positive and productive life. The Miss Deaf South Dakota Program is just one of several SDAD-affiliated social/special interest groups, ranging from sports to senior citizens activities. For more information, please visit


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