Miss America Laura Kaeppeler knows the importance of focusing on at-risk kids firsthand. When she was in high school, her father spent a year in jail for a white-collar crime. The guidance of two teachers helped her during that difficult time, and now she’s teaming up with Big Brothers, Big Sisters to encourage others to be mentors.
"My personal platform advocates for children who have parents in prison and that really stems from a personal experience of mine and mentoring goes hand in hand with that," Kaeppeler says. "When I look back at when I experienced that and without a few key mentors in my life I certainly wouldn't be the woman I am today... I highly doubt – let alone Miss America. Kaeppeler says she has been "really honored" to be a spokesperson for Big Brothers Big Sisters and "encourage not only myself, these children throughout my year but other people."
Kaeppeler's mission is not only to encourage children whose parents are also serving time but to inspire other adults to become mentors and help empower at-risk kids as well.