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Greendale beauty takes on cancerous beast

Pageant contestant wants win for Women for MACC

Kristy McFaul,Miss Wisconsin United States 2014, sports her home jersey.

Kristy McFaul,Miss Wisconsin United States 2014, sports her home jersey. Photo By Unknown

June 24, 2014

Greendale — When Kristy McFaul competes in the Miss United States pageant in Washington, D.C., in July, she of course wants to win.

But not for her own glory.

Crowned Miss Wisconsin United States in May, the 25-year-old Greendale woman advanced to the national pageant, for which a winner will be announced July 6, and she wants to win to promote her cause: Women for MACC.

"Winning the title of Miss United States has given previous title holders the opportunity to use their voice and advocate for issues in their community," said McFaul, a 2011 graduate of the University of Minnesota. "I want to be Miss United States to put Women for MACC out there."

Promoting the cause

Women for MACC is a non-profit, charitable organization that is fighting to eliminate pediatric cancer and blood disorders. Since it was founded in 1982, it has contributed more than $4 million to the MACC Fund.

McFaul has been a volunteer for Women for MACC since 2012, when she learned about the organization as a member of the Milwaukee Bucks Energy Dance Team. "The Bucks are hand-in-hand with the MACC Fund," she said.

Although pediatric cancer has not touched her or her family's life, McFaul said it does not get the same exposure as other cancers, and she'd like to help shine a spotlight on the need for research in the field.

McFaul said what's frustrating is that children often recover from cancer only to get the same cancer later on. Research — and research dollars — are needed to determine why, and what can be done so it doesn't recur, she said.

Pageant particulars

McFaul explained that while the Miss United States pageant is a beauty pageant, it is platform-based, with judges allotting the most points for the interview portion of the contest.

The winner, she said, will be awarded a prize package that includes an undetermined amount of money that could be used as a scholarship to advance Miss United States' education or be donated to the winner's charity of choice. If she receives the title, McFaul has already made her decision known.

In the meantime, McFaul, who is an event manager for Cuvée Champagne Lounge in Milwaukee's Third Ward, needs to secure sponsors to pay for her travel and lodging expenses, as well as to pick up the $400 tab to do her hair and makeup for the week she's in Washington making appearances. She is soliciting funds for the pageant at www.gofundme.com/9k3qn4.

"It's pretty pricey," she said.

McFaul already has sponsors for an evening gown — she's torn between a white and emerald green one — and a swimsuit, a navy blue two-piece from Vizcaya Swimwear.

"Of course, I've been hitting the gym," she said. "I only had 42 days to get ready after my (Wisconson) pageant."

Her coach, Robin Periard of Franklin, who ran the Miss Wisconsin United States pageant, is prepping McFaul for the interview process.

"What I'm doing to prepare now is a lot of interviewing," she said. "We go through those 101 pageant questions, like 'Why do you want to be Miss United States?'"

Enjoys the pageantry

Beyond her platform, McFaul said she enjoys pageants. "I'm a girly girl. I like dressing up."

She decided to become involved in pageants at the encouragement of a teacher at Greendale High, where she graduated.

"My first pageant was back in 2007," said that year's winner of the Greendale Junior Miss title. "This is only my second one."

That pageant will only be televised in Washington, but it can be streamed from the Miss United States website, www.missunitedstates.com.

Win or lose, McFaul will continue to champion her cause: "I just to get my platform out there."

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