Miss Washington County 2015 Rachel Silver

Director: Jen Moser

College: Portland State University Degree: Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies

Rachel’s year of service as Miss Washington County was one filled with incredible service opportunities and lifelong friendships. She is grateful to have had the experience of working with non-profits such as Breast Friends, Muscular Dystrophy Association and Make-A-Wish Oregon.

Most notably, she is thankful for the people she met as a result of her participation in the Miss Washington County Scholarship Organization. She feels lucky to have crossed paths and created bonds with her fellow participants in the program. Throughout her six years of involvement in the Miss America Organization, Rachel earned many scholarships that assisted her in pursuing her educational aspirations, including the “Spirit of Katie Harmon” award at the Miss Oregon 2015 pageant. This scholarship is awarded to the titleholder who best exemplifies the values of a Miss America, both on and off stage.

Rachel remains honored and grateful to the volunteers of the Miss Oregon program who nominated her for this award, and contends that it meant more to her than walking away with a crown. After graduating, Rachel entered into the field of sexual violence prevention, where she has worked to promote healthy relationships and healthy sexuality education to young people across the state. She aspires to obtain a masters degree to further her career to develop trauma-informed and consent-based sexuality curriculum while coordinating a batterer intervention program for juvenile offenders.

Rachel plans to continue her advocacy for equity and inclusion, to practice intersectional feminism, and to interrupt oppression in all its forms. She also aspires to one day fulfill what she feels is the most important job in the world: motherhood. Rachel is grateful to the organization that she believes made her who she is today. She believes her participation in the Miss America Organization continues to bring her confidence when interviewing for jobs or public speaking, and for having the grace and poise to face adversity. The greatest lesson that she learned was one reflected in the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson, that “to be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”