Mallory Fuller of Tyler wins Miss Texas 2021, Miss America pageant next

Mallory Fuller of Tyler wins Miss Texas 2021, Miss America pageant next

At age 5, Mallory Fuller would sit on her grandmother’s living room floor, eyes wide open and mind full of awe and excitement. She was watching the Miss Texas 2002 competition over and over again. Something about the crowning moment gave her a special feeling.

She turned to her grandmother and said, “I’m going to do that one day.”

Fuller, who is currently a Tyler resident, may have just been saying that at age 5, but on June 26, Fuller received her very own crowning moment and took home the title of Miss Texas 2021. Authenticity and staying true to herself were key to her moment.

“I remember hearing the audience yelling and I remember hearing them calling my name and being so overwhelmed with emotions and so excited. If you go back and watch the video, I’m shaking the entire time. I was so incredibly grateful and excited, but honestly, I don’t remember a single thing that happened that moment,” Fuller said.

Tyler resident Mallory Fuller, who was Miss Colleyville and now Miss Texas 2021, holds her crown as she turns toward the audience for the first time in her reign.

She will now travel across the state of Texas spreading her message of mental health awareness. She will head to Connecticut in December to compete for the title of Miss America during the competition’s 100th anniversary.

Fuller wore a white gown by Fernando Wong and performed a medley of fiddle songs on her violin, including “The Orange Blossom Special.” The instrument with which she performed was symbolic to Fuller, as it represented the connection between her sister who she always supported and also plays the violin.

As part of her prize for winning the competition, Fuller received a $20,000 cash scholarship and the use of a 2021 Infinity Q50 from Sewell Automotive Group during her reign. Each contestant actively participates in raising funds for Texas Cares For Children, the nonprofit that supports the Miss Texas school program throughout the state.

After years of competing in the Miss Texas Outstanding Teen pageant, never winning the title and finally seeing 15 years of hard work pay off, there was some disbelief in Fuller. She said she was at peace and confident the entire week of competing.
Tyler native gets crowned Miss Texas 2021

Tyler resident and Miss Texas 2021 Mallory Fuller plays the violin at the Tyler Rose Garden on Wednesday morning. For her talent portion of the Miss Texas competition, Fuller played the violin.

After competing for four years to get the state title, Fuller was named Miss Colleyville in October 2019 to compete in Miss Texas 2020. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, the competition was delayed. As a result, competitions were moved to the following year and Miss Texas 2019 Chandler Foreman held the title until she recently crowned Fuller.

Fuller took her book, “Henry’s Happy Heart” to schools across Texas and spread her message about mental health and suicide awareness.

Her message comes from personal experience, not only in losing a childhood friend to suicide at an early age but also as a target of bullying and body image issues.

“For me, my mission is suicide prevention, but I like to focus on mental health as a whole. I think my experiences, being bullied for being 5-foot-11 in the sixth grade, have definitely shaped me. I feel like I can relate to those girls in junior high that feel like they don’t belong,” Fuller said. “I remember when I was younger, all I wanted to do was shrink when I walked down the hallway, and I couldn’t do that because I was so much taller than all the girls, all the boys, and most of the teachers as well. So wanting to hide and just not show who I am, was definitely something that I dealt with in junior high, but I think that the Miss Texas Organization gave me the strength to show who I was.”
Tyler woman wins Miss Texas 2021

Mallory Fuller, a resident of Tyler and student of Baylor University, was crowned Miss Texas 2021 by Miss Texas 2019 and Miss Park Cities 2019, Chandler Foreman, and Miss Texas

Fuller said by participating in the competition and getting out of her comfort zone, she learned to love the fact she was taller than everyone else.

She added that each year, Miss Texas brings her own special twist to the title. Fuller said she isn’t the stereotypical pageant girl, adding she has also struggled with her own body image.

Tyler resident Mallory Fuller walks around the Tyler Rose Garden with her crown and sash after winning Miss Texas 2021 on Saturday, June 26 in Richardson at the Miss Texas Scholarship Competition.

Fuller said a lot of work goes into preparing for the competition and credits the Colleyville Organization for being a huge part of her journey as well as her family.

Fuller first got involved with the Miss Texas Organization 15 years ago when her older sister Morgan became a candidate in the teen portion of the competition. Fuller became a Lone Star Princess for her sister, as well as for two girls who went on to win Miss Texas in 2006 and 2007, Shilah Phillips and Molly Hazlett.
Tyler native gets crowned Miss Texas 2021

Tyler resident Mallory Fuller poses at the Tyler Rose Garden with her crown and sash after winning Miss Texas 2021 on Saturday, June 26 in Richardson at the Miss Texas Scholarship Competition.

Fuller’s own sister, Madison, won Miss Texas in 2018 and went on to compete in Miss America.

The opportunity to participate in being a Lone Star Princess for the organization gave Fuller an inside look of what the competition is like and served as a mentoring opportunity.

“The biggest thing I took away from that was just the fact that they were competing in the Miss Texas organization but they were still pouring into their Lone Star Princesses and they still knew how to make me feel like I was special,” she said.
Tyler woman wins Miss Texas 2021

Fuller has gotten the opportunity to have her own Lone Star Princesses as well and has been a mentor to them.

“I never really looked up to celebrities. I looked up to Miss Texas,” Fuller said. “To be in a position to be the role model that I looked up to, is unreal to me.”

The week leading up to Fuller’s crowning moment consisted of multiple competitions like a private interview, a talent phase, an on-stage interview, a red carpet evening wear competition and a social impact pitch.

“One of my favorite parts of competing is definitely the sisterhood. Getting to know all the girls and hearing their stories and listening to things they bring to the competition is amazing. I feel like even though we’re competing, I like to say we’re competing together, not against each other,” she said. “Being among that group really pushes you to be the best version of yourself. I feel like it’s more building each other up, and not like the stereotypical ‘catty.'”
Tyler woman wins Miss Texas 2021

A contestant gasps as she holds another finalists’ hands during the moment she is announced the winner of the Miss Texas 2021 competition in Richardson. Mallory Fuller of Tyler, and Miss Plano, Landry Champlin were the two finalists. Fuller was named Miss Texas 2021.

She said this year’s contest was one of her favorites because all girls were amazing.

Fuller said she has a passion for loving people, and one of her biggest goals this year is to meet the people of Texas, hear their stories and love them.

“The best ways that we can show up to each other is by listening to each other’s stories and connecting with each other,” Fuller said. “That’s my greatest hope as Miss Texas, is to be able to stay true to who I am, which is somebody who loves people and wants to get to know everybody that she meets.”
Tyler woman wins Miss Texas 2021

The contestants competed in categories including a private interview, lifestyle and fitness, talent, evening gown and onstage question. Fuller will compete for Miss America in December.

Miss Texas Scholarship Organization Executive Director Jan Mitchell said Fuller is a perfect example of the role.

“Mallory is involved in community service, is talented, intelligent and exhibits the values of a positive role model for children and all Texans across the state,” Mitchell said. “The Miss Texas Scholarship provides educational scholarships for young women across the state of Texas and we know that Mallory will set a great example for the young women of Texas who are a part of our program.”

Fuller is now preparing to compete for the title of Miss America. Because she will be traveling and spreading her message across the state, Fuller will take a one-year break from pursuing her master’s degree at Baylor University. She will be preparing for the competition in December by eating healthy, working out, practicing her talent, and making sure she shows what she wants people who are watching to see in her.

“I realize now that I am a representation of everyone in the state,” Fuller said, adding before stepping foot on the stage for her bigger competition, she will be telling herself to radiate Mallory and Jesus as she does at every competition.


Brant Foy

Brant E. Foy is a reporter for Business Journal.  He has previously worked for the Waco Star Journal.  As a contributor to Business Journal, Brant covers emerging business developments, legal and trending technology related stories.