Miss Wisconsin: Changing the world one school at a time

On April 15, Miss Wisconsin, Kristina Smaby, traveled to Black River Falls to speak at Forrest Street Early Learning Center and at Black River Falls High School.

She started out meeting the special education students. Senior Breeze Decora bowed to her like she was royalty. She is sending them all autographed pictures of herself.

“I am here today because Courtesy Corporation in conjunction with McDonalds and the Ronald McDonald house sponsored me to travel around the state of Wisconsin to different communities to send different messages,” said Smaby.

BRFHS was her first high school to speak at. But she was not far from home while speaking here.

“I am from Holmen, Wis., where I graduated in 2005. I would have graduated from Viterbo last December, but I had to take a year off from life to be Miss Wisconsin,” said Smaby.

She is majoring in Business Management with an emphasis in Human Resources.

“I actually want to open my own business. I would like to open up a national chain of intergenerational care centers,” said Smaby.

An intergenerational care center is a facility that cares for both young children and adults.

“In eight grade my grandfather moved in with my family because he could no longer live on his own. We spent every day together. Some mornings I would wake up and we would have breakfast together or after school we would go on a walk together. Some nights we would watch I Love Lucy. That was our favorite TV show to watch together,” said Smaby. “There were some moments when I learned a lot about the aging process. Generations can teach each other a lot. And that is my goal– to bring the generations together.”

To keep herself focused on her goals she would write them on a Post-It-Note and keep them up until she accomplished the goal on the note.

“I am still working on goals I had in high school. When I was in high school I was in DECA. And I had to come up with a business and figure out how to run it. And the intergenerational care center was my business. So I am still working on what I was passionate about in high school. Also I kept my goal to be Miss Wisconsin throughout a couple of years until I finally achieved that goal,” said Smaby.

This Smaby had tried three times before she was finally crowned Miss Wisconsin.

“I persevered until I accomplished my goal. My best advice is, do not let your dreams die out. Keep them alive until you accomplish them. Never give up,” said Smaby.