Photo by Arthur Garcia for Select Studios
Hair: Eric Vaughn for Michael Kemper Salon
There is a special roster that every girl in Texas would like to have her name on. It contains a list of the most accomplished, beautiful and recognizable names in the world of pageantry. There are nine Miss USA title holders on it and even a Miss Universe! The roster contains all the incredible girls who have won the coveted and elusive title of Miss Texas USA, and through persistence, Lauren Guzman's name was added this year. At only 23, Lauren has also accomplished the feat of becoming the fifth former Miss Texas Teen USA to win both titles!
But being successful in pageants is only one aspect of Lauren's ambition. "I recently graduated from St. Mary's University in San Antonio with a major in Forensic Science and will be pursuing a career as a special agent with the FBI." Referencing the lead character in The Silence of the Lambs, she offers, "I want to be the next 'Clarice'!" Along the way, she managed to pick up the St. Mary's Presidential Merit Scholarship, President's Award for Educational Excellence and President's Volunteer Service Award--all while volunteering in various associations such as WINGS (Women Involved in Nurturing, Giving, and Sharing), Girl Talk and the Texas State Guard Rapid Reaction Force.
Lauren also breaks the mold when it comes to beauty queens in military-type positions. "I have been in the Texas State Guard Rapid Reaction Force for five years and have received the TXSG Commander's Recognition for Exceptional Duty Performance and the TXSG Service Medal for Honorable Service in the Texas Military Forces. The Texas State Guard is a volunteer militia, and we are deployed in the event of a natural disaster to supplement the local and state law enforcement. The RRF is trained in land navigation, search and rescue, swift water rescue and shelter management."
Introspectively, Lauren states, "My strongest talents include communicating well with others, being a good mediator, motivator and friend. My friends see me as a classy, sociable young woman who is driven to accomplish what she sets out to do." But she also recognizes her imperfections and willingly shares them with others. "Two years ago, I started having trouble focusing in school and completing assignments. It was a very stressful situation for me and required a great deal of effort for me to accept that I needed outside help. I was diagnosed with ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), and with the help of my physician and support of my family, I am working to overcome this hurdle." Despite this challenge, her outlook remains positive: "I have the courage, determination, ability and faith in myself to overcome obstacles in my path. I consider myself to be very optimistic and I always look on the bright side of every situation."
Photos by Arthur Garcia for Select Studios