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Miss Kentucky United States 2012 - Andrea Kimberlin Promotes ADHD Awareness
Andrea Kimberlin, 23, of Louisville, KY has been crowned Miss Kentucky United States 2012. Andrea is not the stereotypical beauty queen.
By: Andrea Kimberlin for Miss United States 2012
Andrea is not the stereotypical beauty queen. She a 23-year-old female with a college degree in Computer Information Systems and works for a major corporation in an IT Leadership program. She is CompTIA Network + Certified, ITIL Foundation Certified, and is pursuing her SANS GSEC Certification.
People ask Andrea why she chose to compete in beauty pageants when she is a busy IT professional.
In early 2011, Andrea developed serious skin issues (eczema) which were very obvious. It was a real drain on her self-esteem. Andrea's primary physician said it was all stress. After discussing her issues with a close friend and coworker who had ADHD, Andrea sought out the advice of her physician for an evaluation of ADHD in January 2012.
She was prescribed an extended release ADHD medication and within 2-3 days of starting the medication, Andrea's skin cleared up significantly. Within a couple weeks it was perfectly clear. The eczema was indeed caused by stress; undiagnosed ADHD!
Living with undiagnosed ADHD all those years, Andrea endured and overcame abuse, depression, anorexia, bullying, and anxiety. Beating all of these issues is what Andrea considers her greatest achievement which makes her the unique, well-rounded adult she is today.
Andrea has chosen ADHD awareness as her platform and specifically ADHD Aware as her organization of support. ADHD Aware is a 501(c)(3) organization run by and for people with ADD to empower children, adults and families affected by ADHD, educate those who impact us, and enlighten all people as to the courage and competence of our singular community.
Andrea will use her reign as Miss Kentucky United States 2012 to help girls or boys who may have ADHD, like she does, know that it’s OK. Says Andrea, "Anyone can become a successful, intelligent, and beautiful person despite ADHD. In fact, ADHD gives you special gifts and talents which make you shine." Andrea is a perfect example that no matter what life throws at you, one can still achieve anything you set your mind to.
Says Andrea, "You can be a beauty queen even if you’re a geek who works in IT, is only 5’3", and have ADHD. Too often in the media and in society, ADHD is treated like a fake disorder; one that doesn’t exist. There is a stereotype that ADHD is over-diagnosed. It’s estimated that 10% of the population has ADHD and if anything it’s under-diagnosed. No child should suffer with undiagnosed ADHD for over 20 years like I did."
Six months ago in November 2011 if you'd have told Andrea she had ADHD and would be Miss Kentucky United States 2012, she would have laughed you out of the room.
Today, Andrea is proud to say she has ADHD, and getting this diagnosis not only turned her life around, but it is one of the main reasons she is able to say with pride that she is Miss Kentucky United States 2012.
Andrea states, "This isn't my crown. It's a crown for every child or adult with ADHD."
Page Updated Last on: May 28, 2012