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Carole Gist, 1st African American Miss USA, Dominates RHOA Reunion 2013

Posted: April 8th, 2013 in Carole Gist, Kenya Moore, Miss USA, Vanessa Williams by LALATE

Carole Gist, 1st African American Miss USA, Dominates RHOA Reunion 2013


LOS ANGELES (LALATE) – Who was the first African American Miss USA? Carole Gist was the first African American Miss USA, while Vanessa Williams is the first African American Miss America, RHOA fans were reminded last night. Porsha Stewart tried to create a history debate with Kenya Moore Sunday. But Moore took her fan and blew Porsha’s debate agenda into the wind, fabulously.

Carole Gist has yet to comment about RHOA Reunion 2013 telecast (update below). But Porsha Stewart tried to evoke a history debate in last night’s RHOA reunion. Porsha asked Kenya why she keeps on mentioning Vanessa Williams but not Carole Gist. Porsha then claimed Kenya allegedly said this season that she asserts to be the first Black Miss USA.

Kenya Moore, when offered an opportunity to respond to Porsha, declined. But last night, Kenya took to Twitter about the matter. Moore’s fans claimed foul against Porsha.

Kenya retweeted one fan’s correct comment “you always said you were the 2nd African American Miss USA but are the FIRST BROWN ONE and that means something.” Kenya also tweeted another fan’s remarks “Porsha must be infatuated with @KenyaMoore. She love arguing with and insulting her.”

Despite Porsha’s poor attempt at a history debate on a reality TV program, one thing is clear. Search results do go back that far, even for persons in the forties, despite Porsha’s age comments this season.

In 1983, Vanessa Williams became the first African-American Miss America; she is now 50 years old. Carole Gist, now age 43, became the first African American woman to win the Miss USA title in 1990. And Kenya Moore, age 42, won the Miss USA title in 1993. Kenya also finished sixth in the Miss Universe, another massive achievement often not mentioned on RHOA this season as well. UPDATE: See below in the comments section a statement from Ms. Gist to LALATE readers.


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Carole Gist, Kenya Moore, Miss USA, Vanessa Williams






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23 Responses to 'Carole Gist, 1st African American Miss USA, Dominates RHOA Reunion 2013'

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  1. Helen said,

    on April 8th, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Porsha is not lying about the statement of Kenya saying she was the first Black Miss USA, Mr. Kenya did make that statement.

  2. Evonne said,

    on April 8th, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    Why is Kenya on the show? She is not a housewife! She has brought so much negative energy to the show this season. I’m tired of the producers putting all these negative black women on television and allowing them to act a fool. Last season it was Nene showing off; his season it’s Kenya. These females are an embarrassment to the African American race and should be forced into the background. ONA: Can one compete in a pageant with fake boobs and bumps? Is Kenya’s * and rear end really manufactured? If they are she should not have been allowed to participate in a pageant. According to the photo above, Kenya looks like she doesn’t have much of a breast so her boob job must have been done after winning the pageant. What’s the hoopla about modeling a swimsuit? There’s no talent there! The Miss America title is a much more respectable title. Please get Kenya off the show! I’m praying for Portia. Kordell filing for divorce may be a blessing in disguise for Portia. She should role with it and don’t look back.

  3. A. Johnson said,

    on April 8th, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    Kenya HAS said that she was the 1st black Miss USA.several times during the season In fact, she has also remarked that she was a part of history because of it. Of course she had no rebuttal for Porsha’s remark on Carole Gist. Fact is fact and no amount of fan waves or skirt twirls can change that. I think there is a saying that goes, “No one remembers number 2.”

  4. A. Johnson said,

    on April 8th, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    Kenya HAS said that she was the 1st black Miss USA several times during the season. In fact, she has also remarked that she was a part of history because of it. Of course she had no rebuttal for Porsha’s remark on Carole Gist. Fact is fact and no amount of fan waves or skirt twirls can change that. I think there is a saying that goes, “No one remembers number 2.”

  5. miss c said,

    on April 8th, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    according to porsha’s previous comments, carol gist is irrevelvant and too old as well. what has carol done since winning? it doesn’t matter, both women matter and will remain relevant until the end of time. other than being someone’s grandaughter, what has porsha contributed, other than name calling and ridicule?

  6. Get a Hobbie said,

    on April 8th, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    KENYA NEVER SAID SHE WAS THE FIRST AFRICAN AMERICAN MISS USA SHE SAID SHE WAS. APART OF HISTORY. CYNTHIA ACTUALLY CONFUSED THE TWO COMPETITION NOT KENYA . PLUS WHY IS PORSHA ALWAYS COMING FOR KENYA SHE IS CLEARLY OVER YOU AND IF YOU COME BACK TO THIS SHE WILL BE YOUR STARTLING AGAIN. BTW FOR THE PERSON THAT SAID KENYA AND NENE BRING A BAD NAME TO AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMEN IS A LIE. YOUR AND INDIVIDUAL AND REPRESENT YOURSELF SO STOP LOOKING TOWARDS OTHERS TO IDENTIFY YOU.


  7. on April 9th, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    Hello to all,

    I am Carole Gist Stramler, I was the first African American woman and the first from the state of Michigan to be crowned Miss USA and I placed 1st runner up in Miss Universe. Those are facts that can be truthfully found anywhere on the internet. However, a misunderstood and misquoted comment made in my very first press conference have haunted me even to this day regarding this “blackness issue.” Reporters were commenting on my features and because an Aunt did an genealogy on our family I remembered all that makes up my heritage. Most African Americans have Native American in their history and how mentioning that turned into I am mixed heritage of African and Indian. I have way more than that as most of us do. My African roots are Northern Nigerian but I would not be considered Nigerian and Native American, would I? Both my parents and both paternal and maternal grandparents are African American. The most amazing discrimination I have ever experienced has been from my “own” people.Because my complexion is a little lighter than Kenya’s, I am somehow not black enough? So, she is the first real “black” Miss USA. That is a bunch of nonsense and cr--p. I love Kenya as a child of God, no matter how she acts or is portrayed on TV. I have known her since I was 14 years old, we danced together in a local dance troop, went to the same high school, participated in another competition together and we just hung out 2 summers ago in Las Vegas for the Miss USA 60th anniversary. I wish her all the best in all of her endeavors. None of the women on the RHOA define me or validate me with there comments or lack of comments. I appreciate all the people who feel that I was some how vindicated or validated by my name being mentioned on a couple TV shows and in some printed media. It is nice to be acknowledged for something that happened and can not be undone or erased.To the comment that I am irrelevant and too old, I do take issue with that, if in fact that was said because I haven’t seen the show. My schedule is way to busy for that at this time in my life. I made a conscious choice to come home 6 months after my reign to finish school and pursue a music career. But my life took a different turn and I found a new mission and ministry. After graduating from Northwood University with two Associates Degrees and a dual Bachelors in Management and Marketing and International Business, I attend Word of Faith International School of Ministry. I got married and became a stay at home mother and raised my two beautiful children. I served as the Aerobics Coordinator for our Ministry’s Fitness and Athletic outreach department for almost 15 years and served in Sunday school and Children’s ministry as a team leader, praise and worship leader and choir leader for over 12 years, coached volleyball for middle school and high school girls teams, coached track and field for middle school girls, continued to work with young girls preparing for modeling or pageants, fund raised for American Stroke Association (over 15k with 2 full marathons), volunteered with many organizations in my community, motivational speaker for dozens of organizations in Michigan for womens, youth and girls groups, made over dozens of brides and bridal parties for their showers, photos and wedding ceremonies, helped hundreds of men and women get in shape and become their best healthy selves and continue to do that full time with my business Royal Physique Fitness. I am a proud fitness professional that takes what I do seriously and passionately. This is my ministry to help people get healthy, stay healthy, and go to the next level of their own wellness–mind, body and soul. So, I don’t think…..scratch that I know that I am relevant and I am not too old. Age is only a number and if Ernestine Shepherd at 74 can look good and feel great, then so can I. I am proud to be almost 44 yrs with most people amazed to know that and think that I am late 20’s or early 30’s. :-) I know I have contributed positively to my community and family which in turns helps serve society. I matter, I am strong, I am still beautiful in and out and I am a African American woman happy in the skin I am in, loving life and willing to help any and everyone else find that for themselves as well. Thank you for you time and energy. Be blessed, Carole

  8. IrvineMichele said,

    on April 9th, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    Thank you Carole Gist Stramler for setting the record straight. I do believe there has been a lot of mis-quote’s when it comes to Kenya Moore’s reality-show persona because she tends to rile up the other gals on the show, & maybe some of that part is intentional. After all, low-ratings (or no ratings) does not make for renewed contracts lol! That being said, both yourself AND Kenya appear to be well-spoken, intelligent and grounded women of color that all females could look to for inspiration. Regardless of race or skin color. I personally like Kenya, because I did research her and she did (or was) everything she’s claimed; bottom line I think she has a good heart and I wish her well. She is also a fitness professional like yourself and if y’all are 44 yrs old and she is 42, then I’m all over it! Good luck & thank you for contributing to this thread :-)

  9. BigBurlyMo said,

    on April 9th, 2013 at 6:00 pm

    So, finally, for the reunion, Porsha learned how to look up title information on the internet?

    Something smacks of her being spoon-fed this info by someone else to prep her for the reunion. Maybe Shade-rah Porks, her slippery ‘lawyer?’ Or perhaps even Ms. Gist herownself bothered sending Porsha the historical dead sea skulls of the Miss USA contests of yore.

  10. B said,

    on April 9th, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    Kenya mentions Vanessa Williams opening the door for her ten years prior as the first black Miss America and it’s just obvious she wants to act like she was the one who paved the way for black women in the Miss USA pageant. I have a hunch Kenya is jealous of Carole Gist, especially since they’ve known each other since they were teens. Kenya appears to be a very jealous woman on RHOA. Carole Gist was 1st runner up Miss Universe 1990, by the way…

  11. natasha said,

    on April 9th, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    Kenya is not from Atlanta and we really think she should take all that crazy home to wherever she came. She is just camera hungry and creates story lines for drama. She created Walter by telling lies, lies, lies, lies. That fan was another over the top cra-cra sign. I lost all sorts of respect for RHOA .Bravo we have enough home grown crazies please stop bringing them in.

  12. jason blacmond said,

    on April 10th, 2013 at 8:52 am

    no need to lie or withhold the truth, it will eventually come to light, as it did. I wish “Mrs. Gist-Stramler” all the best… So glad the record was set straight and for that Kenya Moore, she needs some Psychiarty help, perhaps it as Porsha Stewart eluded, she hates married women!!! Reminds me of a movie… “It’s mine, all mine!!!”, the Bad Seed

  13. shle896 said,

    on April 11th, 2013 at 9:45 pm

    I disagree. Kenya is known to be the first African-American to win the Miss U.S.A. title because she isn’t of mixed race, but more importantly she grew up as an African-American, while Gist grew up identifying more with her Indian heritage. Sorry, but those are two very separate groups and it has more to do with their cultural upbringing than the color of their skin and that has been understood for a long time. NOW all of a sudden it’s an “issue”. I wouldn’t expect Porsha, however, to “get it” because she is a simpleton and has the maturity of a 16 year old.

  14. ksmalls said,

    on April 12th, 2013 at 7:14 am

    Kenya Moore never said she was the first black woman to be crowned Miss USA. What she said was it’s an achievement for chocolate girls everywhere who were not considered to be pretty. I would assume she meant dark skinned women. On the other hand I feel she used Vanessa Williams as a role model for herself because this was the first time any of us saw a woman of color win a title such as the Miss America or any other pagenant of that caliber. Carole Gist came 7 years later, and Kenya Moore was crowned 3 years later to win the
    Miss USA pagenant respectively. So people can use the role model of their choice it just that Vanessa Williams came first in the pagenant industry as a whole and who Kenya Moore admired from the beginning.

  15. Evelyn Frye said,

    on April 12th, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    Kenya Moore stated on RHOA that she was the first Afican American miss USA…if anyone doesnt believe that, just watch the beginning of the season, she compared herself to JFK, Martin Luther King and others in history…she never mentioned Carole Gist once as the first black miss USA… Kenya Moore is a bad representative of the Miss USA title…God help us if this woman is a role model for young women in america today…..give credit where credit is due…….Carole Gist is the appitamy of Class…..Kenya Moore is a Trashy, twirling idiot….

  16. dylan said,

    on April 13th, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    Kenya is utterly self-absorbed, and nobody thinks more highly of her than she does! She is a legend in her own mind. She is shallow and insecure; only a crazy man would want her in his life. She insults black women with her demeanor, and clearly Carole Gist’s #1 Miss USA position threatens her. She thinks she is the star of the show…what a joke. She’s a sad joke!

  17. Robin Quincy said,

    on April 14th, 2013 at 10:04 am

    @shle896, you obvioulsy did not read Carole Gist’s post on this same section. Carole has always identified as African-American. The fact that she may have mentioned being part Native American in no way takes away from her black heritage. As most of us who are of African-American descent have some other races in them. And as far as saying, Kenya is known as being the first AA Miss USA, go and look it up and Carole Gist is recognized as such, because she is. NOT Kenya.

  18. Amelia said,

    on April 14th, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    KENYA NEVER SAID SHE WAS THE 1ST BLACK MISS USA. You are ONLY getting this info from Porsha dumb * who thinks she can google Kenya NOW when at first she couldn’t even remember her title stating she cant remember. Y’all ddumb asses remember that right?

    DURING HER WENDY WILLIAMS INTERVIEW (YOUTUBE) AND INTRO ON RHOA on the FIRST Episode KENYA CLEARLY AND DEFINITIVELY STATED SHE WAS KNOWN AS THE 2ND BLACK WOMAN TO EVER BE CROWNED MISS USA.

    LALATE please post the videos as proof!

    also, who cares about Carole Gist no one remembers her anyway only Vanessa Williams and if she has soooo many degress why can’t she spell?

    I’m done here.

  19. DidSheGoThere? said,

    on April 19th, 2013 at 11:18 am

    umm…. Vanessa Williams was the very 1st black woman to be crowned Miss America in 1983, so of course both Carole (Miss USA 1990) and KENYA (Miss USA 1993) looked up to Vanessa… SMDH… I agree Carole, most discrimination comes from your “own” people… My people we gotta do better… #willielynched

  20. LOOL said,

    on April 19th, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    Carol Gist, Vanessa willaims and Kenya Moore all paved the way for black women in the entertainment/modeling industry, no matter how much you hate kenya IT’S A FACT. However was kenya the first african american Miss USA NO SHE WAS NOT.

    In my opinion the Carol gist/Miss Usa didn’t dominate RHOA, it was the debacle between kenya and pahedra and Nene and phaedra followed by kims apperance that dominated the show, while everybody took a back seat.

    I was nuetral with the kenya and phaedra debacle, because I didn’t like kenya’s behaviour but I won’t call phaedra innocent with this because she is just a shady and a instigator as kenya, she just isn’t a loony as Kenya. When it came to the phaedra vs. NeNE, I sided with Nene. To be real the most honest and non-shady person in the show is kandi as far as I am concerned. The rest are instigators, trouble makers to a extent, some worst then others.

    As much as people are complaining of wanting Kenya out they are wasting their breath because BRAVO announced RHOA is signed on for another season and all the females are on board, and we will see more drama but with the most unlikely ones. BRAVO is making money because of people(especially african americans) that would rather see Kandi then Colin powell or Oprah(something Bill Cosby complained about). So African americans should not complain about nothing.

    I find the show funny and entertaining, can’t wait to see what the divorced dummy trouble maker(porsha), miss thang/queen(Nene), the loony Miss USA(Kenya), the shady/sneaky but professional lawyer(phaedra), the boring model(cynthia), and the I don’t care attitude ex-singer(kandi) bring up in the next season. I heard expect to see Nene’s wedding in the next season. also I would like to see how prosha will stand up to kenya after always making fun of her for being single and not married.

    From a anonymous foreigner with love

  21. bw said,

    on April 22nd, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    Porsha is immature, shallow and not very intelligent.

    Kenya is smply mentally ill. Those demons haunting her, most likely stemming from a combination of her mother’s rejection and a defective gene, have made her a bitter women, not a pretty look regardless of the physical attributes.

    She has all the attributes of a walking timebomb. Scarry…

  22. RDCobbs said,

    on June 17th, 2013 at 11:27 am

    I can attest to Carol being the 1st African-American Miss USA and 1st Runner Up in the Miss Universe competition, which she should have won, but I’m confident that race played a factor in her not winning (because the answer given by the winner was ridiculous, lol). As a male, I watched her competing like it like the Super Bowl.

    Carol and I became good friends the summer in which she worked in my home town at Cedar Point Amusement Park. She, at no time at the early age of 18, ever considered herself as being anything more than a very ambitions “Black” girl (that’s how we described ourselves back then). While working at Cedar Point, she was actually competing in Detroit’s Miss Black World (I could be incorrect on the title of that pageant). As we hung out during that summer, I asked her if it was her goal to win pageants and become a model. It was her answer that blew me away! She shared with me that she was utilizing her God’s gifts to win these pageants so she could win the grand prize. The Grand Prize of what??? Fame/Fortune??? No!!! The reason she wanted to win was for the grand prize of a scholarship, so she could pursue her dream of a degree in Hotel/Restaurant Management. That answer “floored me” and became one of the most endearing characteristics about Carol that I grew to love. I lost touch with my good friend after I graduated college, but I wish her the best.

    Just wanted to provide my insight, because I was there and witnessed the entire process, as a friend and a fan.

  23. Marv said,

    on January 27th, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    I’d like to add another perspective, albeit several months later, to this conversation. Missing from this dialogue is the fact that between 1989 and 1993, five black women reigned as America’s sweethearts in two of our most iconic cultural institutions: Miss America and Miss USA.

    Missouri’s Debbye Lynn Turner was crowned “Miss America 1990″ in September, 1989; the third African-American to hold that honor. Then, the following April, Carole Anne-Marie Gist of Detroit, Michigan becomes the first black woman crowned as “Miss USA,” in 1990. It marked the first time in history that two black women reigned simultaneously.

    Then, before we could even catch our breath, Marjorie Judith Vincent of Illinois succeeds Turner as “Miss America 1991.” Nobody saw that one coming. Two back to back black Miss Americas. Wow.!!!!
    A minor lull in 1992. But, in April, 1993, another Detroit native, Kenya Summer Moore, becomes the second sista crowned as “Miss USA 1993.” Culminating in September, 1993 with the selection of the fifth black crowned Miss America, Kimberly Clarice Aiken of South Carolina, as “Miss America 1994.”

    I think Kenya missed an opportunity to “school” Porscha, Phaedra, NeNe; Cynthia, and Kandi, that her victory, along with the other phyne ladies of the beauty queen sistahood, changed the perception of American beauty standards. Brown and chocolate sistas finally earned some respect. Not only were Kenya and the others beautiful, but they were educated as well, quashing the beauty queen “bimbo” image.

    Meanwhile, also at that time, Naomi Campbell was regarded as the world’s number one super-model. Another beauty standards breakthrough. Whoopi Goldberg also won an Academy Award Oscar in ‘91. Another example of a woman who didn’t fit America’s Eurocentric beauty standards. Kenya missed a huge opportunity…I’m just sayin….

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