Regina Hopper

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Regina Hopper Blakely
OccupationPresident and CEO of the Miss America Organization
Known forMiss Arkansas in 1983; Emmy Award Winner for the CBS Evening News with Dan Rather

Regina Hopper Blakely is an American business executive, attorney and former news anchor, who is the former President and CEO of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America.[1] Hopper departed Intelligent Transportation Society of America amid most of the organization's staff either quitting or being laid off. POLITICO reported frustrations with Hopper's leadership style, according to three former staffers who spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid being seen as criticizing their former boss. Hopper “was a disaster — could teach a class about how not to run a trade association,” according to Kurt Bardella, who worked as a consultant to the group.[2]

She is also the former President and CEO of America's Natural Gas Alliance, a Washington, DC-based advocacy group,[3] and she was previously the executive vice president of the United States Telecom Association.[4] Immediately prior to joining the Telecom Association, Hopper was senior vice president of litigation communications at Weber McGinn.[3] Hopper was named president and CEO of the Miss America organization on May 17, 2018.[5]

Corporate career[edit]

Regina Hopper was the President & CEO of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America, until her resignation in July 2017. Prior to this she was President and CEO of America's Natural Gas Alliance. Prior to ANGA she was the executive vice president of the United States Telecom Association. Prior to her work in industry associations, Hopper was a correspondent for CBS News, where she covered the White House, anchored the network's overnight broadcast and reported on breaking news from the New York and Washington, D.C. bureaus. She was awarded an Emmy for investigative reporting on 48 Hours. Before working at both the ABC and CBS affiliates in Little Rock, Arkansas, Hopper practiced securities and bankruptcy law.


In 2012, CEO Update selected Hopper as one of the nation's top association CEOs. In that same year, The Hill named her to its annual list of top lobbyists.[6]

Earlier careers[edit]

Hopper had several careers earlier in her life.

She was a beauty pageant contestant who won the Miss Arkansas pageant in 1983.[7] In 2009, Hopper returned as emcee of the show.[8]

She was a New York- and Washington, DC-based reporter, who won an Emmy Award,[3][9][10] with the CBS Evening News with Dan Rather.[3][10][11]

Hopper is also an attorney[3] and a graduate of the University of Arkansas.[12]


As CEO of America's Natural Gas Alliance, Hopper resigned under pressure from the board with NGI reporting and citing, "The ANGA board was extremely disappointed with her performance." Natural Gas Intel reported, " several senior staff at ANGA have recently jumped ship."[13]

Gretchen Carlson, and a newly elected board, installed Hopper as CEO under scrutiny from state organizations and former Miss Americas who had wanted a national search for new staff leadership.[14] Eleven former Miss Americas say that following the email scandal[14] that resulted in the exit of the former CEO and chairman of the board in December, they were given the opportunity to install "our very own sisters." Former titleholders assumed temporary co-chair roles on the board. From there, Carlson was supposed to head up a national search to find a new CEO.[14]

Hopper orchestrated the removal of previous Miss America Organization leadership by leaking internal emails to Dick Clark Productions eventually leading to the organization dropping the production.[15]

After a few short months into her tenure as President and CEO of the Miss America Organization, 22 states held a vote of no confidence[16] in the leadership of both Hopper and Chairwoman Gretchen Carlson[17] demanding their resignations, citing a lack of transparency and adherence to best practices.[18] The calls for resignation came as several board members abruptly were forced to resign. Former Miss Americas Kate Shindle and Laura Kaeppeler Fleiss listed “toxic culture” as their reason for departing from the board in June 2018. Former Miss North Carolina Jennifer Vaden Barth and Former Miss Maine Valerie Crooker Clemens, detailed they were forced to resign[19] when Carlson issued a letter stating they were trying to gain control of the organization, the Wall Street Journal reported.[16]

On August 10, 2018, 11 former Miss Americas released a statement[14] calling for both Carlson and Hopper to resign. Just several days later, Miss America 2018 Cara Mund wrote a letter to her fellow Miss America titleholders alleging that Carlson and Hopper “silenced me, reduced me, marginalized me, and essentially erased me in my role as Miss America.”[20]

Mund went on to say that after the new board took over in January, she “was given three talking points” and told to stick to them: That “Miss America is relevant”; that “the #MeToo movement started with a Miss America” (Carlson, who sued her Fox News boss Roger Ailes for sexual harassment in 2016); and that both she and Carlson were graduates of elite colleges.[21]


  1. ^ "Regina Hopper".
  2. ^ "Hopper leaves ITS America". POLITICO. Retrieved 2018-07-09.
  3. ^ a b c d e "ANGA names Regina Hopper president, CEO". Oil and Gas Financial Journal. November 6, 2009. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  4. ^ "Energy, environmental interests set to battle". November 9, 2009.
  5. ^ Miss America taps women for leadership spots
  6. ^ "The Hill's 2012 Top Lobbyists". The Hill. 2012-10-31. Retrieved 2012-10-31.
  7. ^ "Miss Arkansas Pageant - History". Archived from the original on July 6, 2010. Retrieved June 28, 2010.
  8. ^ "Miss Arkansas begins tomorrow". Sttuttgart, AR, Daily Leader. July 14, 2009. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  9. ^ "Arkansas native Regina Hopper". FindArticles. Arkansas Business Publishing Group. October 13, 2003. Retrieved 2 July 2010.
  10. ^ a b "Regina Hopper". America's Natural Gas Alliance. Archived from the original on 2010-04-03. Retrieved 28 June 2010.
  11. ^ "Regina reports on White House shooting".
  12. ^ "Noteworthy Alumni". University of Arkansas. Archived from the original on 2009-09-23. Retrieved 2 July 2010.
  13. ^ "ANGA CEO Hopper Pressured to Resign". Retrieved 2018-07-09.
  14. ^ a b c d "11 former Miss Americas call for resignation of Gretchen Carlson from pageant". Retrieved 2018-08-17.
  15. ^ "Miss America Organization rocked by leaked emails and damning report on CEO's behavior". Retrieved 2018-08-17.
  16. ^ a b Bauerlein, Valerie (2018-07-08). "Miss America Organization Split by #MeToo Era Swimsuit Decision". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2018-07-08.
  17. ^ Lieu, Amy (2018-07-08). "Miss America board, led by Gretchen Carlson, facing revolt by state pageant officials". Fox News. Retrieved 2018-07-08.
  18. ^ "Miss America insiders clash over pageant's new, swimsuit-free direction". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2018-07-08.
  19. ^ "Miss America Chairwoman Gretchen Carlson receives internal backlash for axing the swimwear segment". Newsweek. 2018-07-08. Retrieved 2018-07-08.
  20. ^ "'No Miss America should be humiliated': Before giving up crown, Cara Mund blasts pageant leadership". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-08-17.
  21. ^ Parry, Wayne. "Reigning Miss America says she was bullied, manipulated by pageant leadership". Retrieved 2018-08-17.

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Mary Stuart
Miss Arkansas
Succeeded by
Lisa Stevens