I recently did an email interview with Sierra Billock, who is a contestant for Miss California-USA, 2011. Many might remember Ms. Billock as Miss Santee 2009, and as the force behind the Fashion Rocks the East fundraiser for the Miss La Mesa and Miss Santee Pageants. She is currently in the final stages of preparing for the Miss CA-USA Pageant, but took some time out to answer a few questions.
Scouting Santee: What prompted you to become involved in pageants such as the Miss Santee and Miss California-USA Pageants?
Sierra Billock: Originally I became involved in pageants such as the Miss Santee pageant because I wanted to serve my community in a bigger more impactful way and attend city events as a representative and role model for younger generations. After competing and becoming Miss Santee I realized I enjoyed the competition aspect of the pageant and saw it as a personal challenge. I also knew that I wanted to continue to be involved in my community and expand my involvement to reach individuals across the state of California. I decided to compete for Miss CA USA for these reasons and because I recognize that being Miss California is a job and one that I would be very good at.
Scouting Santee: How has your involvement in these pageants benefited you?
Sierra Billock: Being involved in pageants has benefited my life in many ways. As a contestant I am challenged with consistently re-evaluating myself to improve things like my public speaking and interview skills. Pageants have had a positive impact in my life and have helped me grow into a strong, confident, and hardworking young woman. My involvement has taught me the power of perseverance and the difference one person can make in the world.
Scouting Santee: What opportunities have you had as Miss Santee 2009 that you probably would not have had otherwise?
Sierra Billock: As Miss Santee one of the greatest opportunities I had was meeting a diverse group of people from around San Diego County. Included in this group of people are the directors of the Miss Santee and Miss La Mesa pageants: Alex Kuty, Troy Hartpence and Natalie Hiebing. These women dedicate such a large portion of their time to help empower young women. I admire them for that and am proud to say that I will be joining them this year as the director of the Miss Santee and Miss La Mesa Princess Programs.
Scouting Santee: What are some of your best memories from your time as Miss Santee?
Sierra Billock: All of my best memories from my year as Miss Santee are those I shared with Nicole Ehlke, Miss Santee Teen 2009. Over the year we spent together we grew to be like sisters. In donating over 200 hours of community service we were able to make a lot of good memories. I especially enjoyed meeting all of the young girls and boys in our community who looked up to us as role models. It was truly an amazing experience and to be able to share it with someone else made it even better!
Scouting Santee: Were there things about being Miss Santee that surprised you, or that you were not prepared for?
Sierra Billock: Having competed five times before obtaining the title and knowing a lot of previous titleholders I pretty much knew what to expect from the job. The only thing that surprised me was that the City of Santee had us pass out surveys at city events to get feedback from attendees. However, being a marketing major, I understood the importance of surveying and how it could affect future events.
Scouting Santee: I understand there are a lot of expenses associated with running for Miss California-USA. How do you handle these expenses?
Sierra Billock: Competing in the Miss California USA pageant is very expensive. The entry fee alone is over $1,500. Then you have to purchase your gown, swimsuit, interview outfit, and everything else you need for competition. In addition to all of that there are pictures and DVDs of the event. In order to pay for all of these costs, I saved a lot of money on my own in addition to holding fundraisers and getting sponsors for the pageant.
Scouting Santee: So, if all goes well, what will the future look like for Sierra Billock?
Sierra Billock: My hope is that I will be Miss California-USA 2011. In that case my upcoming year will be filled with opportunities that only a select group of women have the chance to experience. I would look forward to meeting new people from across our state and serving the Miss CA-USA organization as a representative at charity events and different functions. One of my biggest aspirations is to represent California at the Miss USA pageant next May, which would be a once in a lifetime opportunity. Overall, if I become Miss California my year would be life changing and monumental and I can only hope I get the chance to experience that.
Scouting Santee: Is there anything else you would like to share about your run for Miss California-USA or your time as Miss Santee?
Sierra Billock: I would like to encourage people to come to my golf tournament on Sunday October 24th to help support me in my mission to become Miss California. It will be a very fun event. You may even be able to have me hit your drive for you on one of the holes.
If you are interested in helping Ms. Billock by taking part in the tournament, you can find out more in this article on Santee Examiner. The deadline for signing up is Friday, October 15. You can also contact Susan Billock at 619-820-3514 orSusanBillock@cox.net for information and registration forms.