21-year-old Grace Khachaturian, was crowned Miss Illinois 2018 this weekend at the Marion Cultural and Civic Center in Marion, Illinois. She is a Champaign native and senior Journalist student at the University of Illinois. She will compete at the national finals of Miss America 2019 in Atlantic City on September 9.
Khachaturian, who competed as Miss Capital City, performed a lyrical dance to “You Raise Me Up.” She won $10,000 in scholarships for taking the state crown.
Khachaturian founded the annual Dance Marathon in 2011, which has raised more than $30,000 to provide wishes for children who are terminally ill. She was the lead in several theater productions and played on the girls’ golf team, being named to The News-Gazette’s 2014 all-area first team in her senior year.
If she prevails in September, Khachaturian will become the second C-U native to take the title of Miss America after Urbana’s Erika Harold, currently the Republican nominee for Illinois attorney general, won the crown in 2003.