Miss America 2022 winner: Miss Alaska, Emma Broyles is crowned

Broyles was given her crown by Camille Schrier, who held the title for 2 years due to the coronavirus pandemic

The contestant from Alaska was crowned Miss America at an event Thursday marking the competition's 100th anniversary.

What began as a 1921 Atlantic City beauty pageant has evolved away from the emphasis on looks alone — contestants are no longer judged on physical appearance — with a new focus on leadership, talent and communication skills.

Emma Broyles from Alaska claimed the centennial crown and a $100,000 college scholarship. She emerged as the winner out of 51 contestants representing the 50 states and the District of Columbia at the competition at a Connecticut casino.

MISS AMERICA PAGEANT TURNS 100 YEARS OLD

Miss Alaska Emma Broyles waves in confetti after being crowned Miss America, Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021, at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn. 

Miss Alaska Emma Broyles waves in confetti after being crowned Miss America, Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021, at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn.  (Jessica Hill)

Broyles was given her crown by the most recent Miss America winner Camille Schrier.

The first-runner up was Lauren Bradford, Miss Alabama, and Elizabeth Pierre, Miss Massachusetts took home the second runner-up title.

Following the Top 10 finalists performing their talents, the competition narrowed down to Broyles, Bradford, Pierre, Sydney Park (New York), and Abigail Hayes (Oregon) moving on to the interview segment of the night, where they were asked about their Social Impact Initiatives, per People magazine.

Per the outlet, Schrier made history as the first woman to secure the Miss America title for two years because the 2021 competition was postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Miss Alaska Emma Broyles is surrounded by a group hug after being crowned Miss America.

Miss Alaska Emma Broyles is surrounded by a group hug after being crowned Miss America. (Jessica Hill)

Thursday's competition was co-hosted by Forever Miss Americas Nina Davuluri and Ericka Dunlap. Panelists included Forever Miss Americas Heather French Henry, Katie Stam Irk, and Debbye Turner Bell.

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Miss America Organization Board Chair and Interim President and CEO Shantel Krebs said in a press release on Wednesday: "As we planned our 100th Miss America Anniversary competition, we felt who better to honor and celebrate the heritage of this iconic institution than the amazing women who have actually held the title."

Miss Alabama Lauren Bradford reacts after she is announced as a top 10 finalist in the Miss America competition at the Mohegan Sun casino.

Miss Alabama Lauren Bradford reacts after she is announced as a top 10 finalist in the Miss America competition at the Mohegan Sun casino. (Jessica Hill)

"We are excited to have our Forever Miss Americas join us as co-hosts and panelists as they truly understand the hard work and commitment that each of these incredible young women have put in over the past year as they prepare for our final night of competition and the official title of Miss America 2022."

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Miss Alaska Emma Broyles reacts after being crowned Miss America.

Miss Alaska Emma Broyles reacts after being crowned Miss America. (Jessica Hill)

The finale that historically has been featured in a primetime television broadcast was available only to stream this year via NBC's Peacock service.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.