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Tampa native, aspiring doctor, captures 2017 Miss Tampa title

 Tampa native Olivia Butler earned the title of Miss Tampa on Feb. 4 at the Moroccan Palace.

Photo by Joyce McKenzie

Tampa native Olivia Butler earned the title of Miss Tampa on Feb. 4 at the Moroccan Palace.

For years, she's been known as the daughter of Dr. Madelyn Butler, a past president of the Florida Medical Association and founder of the Woman's Group, a Tampa obstetrics and gynecological group.

Now, Olivia Butler jokes, people may begin to refer to the good doctor as Miss Tampa's mother. Butler, a Tampa native and Wake Forest University graduate, earned the title and a healthy degree of admiration for her competitors.

"The other 13 women in the competition were so enjoyable and part of a night that was absolutely incredible in every way," Butler said.

With the win, Butler receives a $5,000 scholarship to help fund her ongoing educational pursuits at the University of South Florida. She is completing post-graduate work before applying to medical school.

At Wake Forest, however, she majored in communications and honed her operatic singing skills with a music professor at the school. That work paid off in the talent portion of the competition, held on Feb. 4 at Busch Gardens' Moroccan Palace.

Butler's platform involves advocating for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. She started competing in pageants as a way to redefine herself as a woman after a sexual assault.

In addition to the overall prize, Butler also earned the Cathy Pike Abridge Spirit Award, essentiality the congeniality award.

"That really meant a lot to me," Butler said. "At the end of the day, people won't remember if a person won the crown, they'll remember if a person is kind of not."

Other finalists included first runner-up Angela Tompkins; second runner-up Anastasia Lusnia, third runner-up Paige Millirons and fourth runner-up Payton Barrington. The Miss Tampa pageant, which traces its origin back to 1947, award $12,150 in scholarships and donations at the pageant.

Butler, 23, now moves on to the Miss Florida pageant in July, where she will compete for a chance to advance to the Miss America Pageant. Last year, after winning the Miss Pasco County title, Butler finished in the top 10 at the state pageant.

Tampa native, aspiring doctor, captures 2017 Miss Tampa title 02/08/17 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 8, 2017 5:01pm]
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© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


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