Grace Stanke’s journey in the Miss America Organization began when she was just 13 years old, as a shaky violin performer. In an attempt to improve her violin performance skills, Grace looked at opportunities outside of classical performances to help eliminate her shaking. That led her to the Miss America Organization, where she started out as an at-large Outstanding Teen. Grace competed for two years in the Miss Wisconsin’s Outstanding Teen Organization, where she held the titles of Miss Wausau’s Outstanding Teen 2016, Miss Harbor Cities’ Outstanding Teen 2017, before becoming Miss Wisconsin’s Outstanding Teen 2017.
As time passed, Grace began college pursuing an undergraduate degree in Nuclear Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. During her education, she has worked at two world class research labs and as a co-op in Nuclear Fuels at the nation’s largest nuclear fleet. Her work and education helped her to realize the energy crisis happening on a global scale; fossil fuels are running short on supply, causing prices to go up. Zero-carbon, renewable energy sources are the next steps forward, so Grace started her social impact initiative “Clean Energy, Cleaner Future”, to help America convert to zero-carbon energy with an emphasis on nuclear power.
To help pay for school, Grace returned to the Miss America Organization to earn more scholarship dollars. She went on to become Miss Madison 2020/2021, Miss Badgerland 2022, and ultimately now Miss Wisconsin 2022. Grace has earned over $16,000 to help her achieve her academic goals. She is the first person to hold both the Miss Wisconsin’s Outstanding Teen and Miss Wisconsin titles, and is the first person from Wausau to be awarded Miss Wisconsin. She now stands as a confident woman, ready to promote zero-carbon energy sources, a comfortable performer on the violin, and excited to serve the state of Wisconsin.