Marian McKnight Conway
Even among former Miss Americas, Marian McKnight Conway is outstanding.
As a high school valedictorian, magna cum laude, and straight-A student throughout her schooling career, Marian was able to receive her first full scholarship at South Carolina's renowned Coker College based on intelligence testing. She finished her education at U.C.L.A. on an academic scholarship (one of four she received for special academic achievements including a full scholarship as part of Marian winning the Miss America title). Regarding her freshman and sophomore years at Coker College in Hartsville, SC, which was a woman’s college at the time, Marian remarked that “the Coker professors and their expectations made UCLA a piece of cake.”
The beauty of the mind is matched with Marian's natural beauty, which has been well recognized, even recently: On glo at msn “girl crush” Marian was chosen as one of the top 11 Miss Americas of all time: LINK and Life Magazine on Miss America’s 90th Anniversary Celebration chose the 12 Hottest Miss Americas: LINK
A few years after graduation and her marriage to Gary Carmody Conway, whom she met in UCLA, Marian and Gary bought a broken-down ranch in the enchanting Central Coast of California.
Ranching wasn’t exactly what Marian had in mind for herself, and thirty years ago they planted a vineyard and then the first Tuscan olive grove on the Central Coast. Of course, a life often changes in direction. Witness Marian's Camay Commercial as Miss America: VIEW And just as much fun... a beauty among beauties (a little nostalgia please!): LINK Then of course: BEFORE THE GRAPE THERE WAS GRAPEFRUIT!
Marian is now the proud proprietor of Carmody McKnight Estate Vineyard and Winery. Marian is the practical rancher... “In ranching if you can’t sell your cattle you couldn’t possibly eat all that steak, but now wine…well, that’s a different story!” TALK TO MARIAN in her Blog which is all about the wonders of Tuscan Extra Virgin Olive Oil and recipe sharing!