Kimberly Clarice Aiken

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Kimberly Clarice Aiken
Image Kimberly Clarice Aiken.JPG
Born (1975-10-11) October 11, 1975 (age 40)
Columbia, South Carolina United States
Ethnicity African American
Alma mater New York University
Occupation Image consultant and motivational speaker
Title Miss Columbia, SC
Miss South Carolina 1993
Miss America 1994
Predecessor Leanza Cornett
Successor Heather Whitestone
Spouse(s) Haven Cockerham

Kimberly Clarice Aiken Cockerham (born October 11, 1975 in Columbia, South Carolina) was Miss America 1994.[1] Aiken was 18 years old when she won the coveted title, and was only the fifth woman of African descent to be crowned. She won Miss Columbia and Miss South Carolina 1993 en route to her 1994 Miss America crown. Although she did not win any preliminary awards, she was still selected as a top 10 finalist and excelled during the live pageant with a stirring rendition of "Summertime" for her talent, and impressive showings in the swimsuit, evening gown, and interview competitions thus securing her the crown.

Aiken's pageant coach was CB Mathis of CB's Limited in Lancaster, South Carolina.[2] Aiken used the plight of the homeless as her platform. Aiken has made numerous television appearances and was once recognized by People Magazine as one of the "Fifty Most Beautiful People in the World".

She was initiated as a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority at Epsilon Tau Chapter. After graduating from New York University, Aiken pursued a career in public accounting with Ernst & Young LLP, one of the Big Four accounting firms. Today, she is an image consultant and motivational speaker. A professional speaker for nearly ten years, she entertains and inspires audiences with her programs, using her varied experiences and sharing stories of overcoming obstacles, such as brain surgery. She is also a regular columnist for Pageantry Magazine, as well as a wife and mother.

She is the daughter of Valerie and Charles Aiken of Columbia, South Carolina.[citation needed] She married Haven Cockerham and has two children.[3][4]

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Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Leanza Cornett
Miss America
1994
Succeeded by
Heather Whitestone
Preceded by
Carrie Lee Davis
Miss South Carolina
1993
Succeeded by
Tonya Helms