Rapids woman crowned Mrs. Wisconsin
BY MIKE WARREN
WISCONSIN RAPIDS — A Wisconsin Rapids native is the new Mrs. Wisconsin. Tiffany Wharton was crowned April 15, during the Mrs. Wisconsin United States Pageant in Eagle River.
“I went into this pageant with no expectations of winning,” Wharton told the City Times, during an April 19 interview. “I really wanted to get my feet wet in the Mrs. division and knew that this was a wonderful system to participate in,” Wharton added. “I was completely surprised, to say the least. I looked at all of the other women as very strong competitors, and felt like my competition was truly cut out for me in the best way because that’s really how you want to go into any of these competitions, having other strong women up on stage next to you,” she said. “You know that the judges are going to have a very difficult time, and I felt very strongly that all these other ladies that were competing were phenomenal in their own right, and I was very honored to be chosen.”
The former Tiffany Krohn served as Miss Wisconsin Rapids 2008, winning that title on her seventh attempt. This was her first foray into the Mrs. Wisconsin competition.
“When I was in college I actually competed quite a bit because the scholarship dollars were so important to me to be able to pay for school,” Wharton said. “I’m actually on the Board of Directors for the Miss Wisconsin Rapids pageant now, and one of our fellow host moms said (last year), ‘Hey, I think you need to look at this again.’ So, I did and lo and behold here I am,” she added.
The Mrs. Wisconsin pageant consists of an interview conducted by a panel of judges backstage, along with on-stage evening gown and swimsuit/fitness competitions, plus a Personal Platform Promise Statement.
“That is where you basically make a promise to the judges, to the state, to the audience what you’re going to do with your body of work and your platform.”
Wharton’s promise was to continue to expand her self-founded, non-profit organization.
“I had the pleasure of going to the Tech Titans gala in Dallas last October and really felt charged to do something when I heard a CEO speak about their medical device,” according to Wharton. “This device helps adults who are suffering with Opioid Use Disorder basically go through withdrawal without significant symptoms. It reacts with the dopamine receptors and various other things in the brain to mitigate all of these withdrawal symptoms, thereby making somebody more receptive to ongoing treatment, ongoing counseling, various therapies because they’re not also having to combat the withdrawals,” Wharton added. “I developed my organization because it (the device) is not currently covered by insurance. And, what they found is that it really effects two major parts of the population – the extremely wealthy, who can then afford the device – or the indigenous population, and those are the people who can’t afford the device, and I saw a space – I am a business development professional at heart – where I could use my talent in connecting with the founders, owners of various large organizations to raise money to help put these devices in the hands of the people that need them. I’m very passionate about this, and I now have set a goal of raising $1 million before I hit the stage in October,” said Wharton.
Her non-profit organization – Heroes of the Prescription Epedemic (HOPE) – “is the financial bridge to recovery for those suffering from Opioid Use Disorder,” says Wharton, who is an executive tech recruiter for a Texas-based company in her full-time occupation.
The newly-crowned, 36-year-old wife and mother of four children – all under the age of ten – is a graduate of Lincoln High School in Wisconsin Rapids. She will compete for the title of Mrs. United States in October in Memphis, TN.
Wharton is sponsored in her endeavors by NextHome Partners of Wisconsin Rapids, Dumbbells and Doughnuts and Adventure Theory Media. She is currently looking for additional sponsors for the national competition. Sponsorship includes program book pages, a social media presence, in-person appearances and promotion of business and co-branded events.