MONTVILLE, CT — A hometown crowd was cheering Berkeley County native and Miss West Virginia Elizabeth Lynch on last night as she took third runner up in the Miss America pageant in Connecticut.

Lynch earned a $15,000 scholarship with the top five finish.  It was the first time in more than fifty years that a Miss West Virginia placed in the top five.

The Musselman High School alum is a recent graduate from WVU with a Master of Science in food and nutritional science. Her social impact initiative “Growing Up, Growing Ag: Advocating for Appalachian Agriculture” became a platform to showcase farmers and others in the ag industry.

As part of her Miss West Virginia duties, Lynch will travel the state and meet a lot of youngsters:

She talked about her motivational monologue:

Upon completion of her year of service as Miss West Virginia, she will start her PhD with a focus on animal science.

In 1965, Miss West Virginia Ella Dee Kessel placed 2nd runner up in the Miss America pageant.