By Danielle Chavira

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – An Army specialist at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs will represent Colorado on a national stage at the Miss America Pageant. Specialist Maura Spence won the Miss Colorado competition earlier this month.

Spc. Maura Spence (credit: U.S. Army/Spc. Matthew Marsilia)

Spence works as an intelligence analyst and is the first active duty soldier to represent Colorado.

Spence was awarded a $7,500 scholarship, according to the Miss America organization.

(credit: Instagram)

She says her goals as Miss Colorado will be to spread mental health awareness and prevent service member suicides. She adds she wants to keep the memory of her sister alive.

“If I don’t win Miss America, I’ll still be Miss Colorado. Either way, I feel like I win if I get to represent my state and my country,” said Spence.

 

“Very cool and surreal to see how much support I have from my leadership, unit, and the Army in general. I can’t say enough how thankful I am to have the backing that I do during my year and as I prepare for Miss America!” she wrote on Facebook.

(credit: U.S. Army/Spc. Matthew Marsilia)

Spence, from Katy, Texas, is assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

This year’s Miss America pageant is scheduled for December in Connecticut.

Danielle Chavira