By Morgan Bryce
Former WLTZ anchorwoman and 2013 Miss America winner Mallory Hagan announced Tuesday in a press conference that she will run on the Democratic ticket this fall for the U.S. House District 3 seat against 16-year incumbent, Republican Mike Rogers.
Hagan, an Opelika native, posted her announcement last week on her social media accounts, and began a fundraiser on crowdpac.com, a political crowdfunding website.
With an initial goal of $5,000, backers and supporters helped smash that amount two days after Hagan had created the page. As of Tuesday morning, 293 supporters had donated $14,825, or 75 percent of her $20,000 goal.
In December, Hagan found herself embroiled in the midst of a national controversy that ultimately pushed her to test the political waters. An investigation by a number of national media outlets uncovered disparaging emails between members of the Miss America organization about Hagan and other Miss America winners that mocked their weight, intelligence and personal lives.
“It was a painful experience, but it taught me a lot about the power of my voice. By telling my story, by petitioning for change, and by demanding resolution, I ignited a spark that fueled women and men across this country to stand up, speak out, and believe that when people share their stories, positive change can occur,” Hagan said of the situation on her crowdpac page. “I told my story. It was difficult, but it sparked meaningful change. This experience transformed me.”
District 3‘s region covers east central Alabama and encircles portions of Montgomery and Calhoun, Chambers, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Lee, Macon, Randolph, Russell, St. Clair, Talladega, and Tallapoosa counties.
After qualifying Monday, Hagan said she will begin traveling and campaigning through her district, promising to right the wrongs that she believes have occurred in that district for the last 16 years.
“I want to fight for the future of Alabamians. In the coming months I will take every opportunity to get to know the citizens of our district, listen to their concerns, and focus on improving the circumstances and institutions that surround their lives,” Hagan said. “I promise to be your voice for better education, for quality jobs, for fair wages, for access to affordable healthcare, for environmental sustainability, and for gender parity.”
For more information and updates on Hagan’s campaign, visit www.crowdpac.com/campaigns/380799/mallory-hytes-hagan.