A native of Alabama who was living in Rapid City during her reign, Caroline Pettey was crowned Miss South Dakota USA on 25 April 2021 and represented South Dakota at the Miss USA 2021 pageant in Tulsa, Oklahoma. A graduate of Auburn University, she has worked as a weeknight News Anchor, Journalist, and Producer for a duopoly station in Rapid City.
Caroline Pettey is a graduate from Auburn University with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and a Sports Media minor. While reporting for SB Nation and traveling with the WNBA team the Atlanta Dream, Caroline was determined to shine a light on the injustices within female athletics, thus her passion for hard hitting news was born.
Following her intuition, Caroline moved 1400 miles from her birth state of Alabama to the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota, where she now works as a weeknight News Anchor, Journalist, and Producer for a duopoly station in Rapid City. Nationally recognized for her work in journalism, Caroline is honored to be a voice for the constituents of South Dakota.
A volunteer with Her Vote, Her Voice and Working Against Violence, Inc, empowering and educating women on their personal power and purposes is especially important for her. Being crowned Miss South Dakota USA is one of the greatest accomplishments for Caroline, as she has truly found a home in the Mt. Rushmore state and is beyond honored to represent the beautiful people living here. In her spare time, Caroline enjoys snowboarding, hiking, computer coding, and promoting the amazing Miss Universe organization.
The on-stage moments, the tension of the final two and the glory of the crowning, here are Caroline’s state pageant photos.
Watch Caroline’s life change as she is crowned Miss South Dakota USA 2021. Her first runner-up Shania Knutson won the 2022 title.
Lights, camera, action! Professional photoshoots are one of the perks that comes from winning a title.
Caroline’s previous competitions were all in Alabama – she had a four year break between her last pageant there and winning South Dakota. She was third runner-up to Lorin Holcombe at Miss Alabama Teen USA 2013, fourth runner-up to Madison Guthrie at Miss Alabama USA 2015, and a top 10 semi-finalist in 2016 and 2017.
All beautiful things must come to an end, no matter how bittersweet. See Caroline’s farewell walk and other candids from the weekend she crowned her successor Shania Knutson as Miss South Dakota USA 2022.