Former Miss America Vanessa Williams, pictured in April, will be head judge of this year’s competition. (Andy Wong/AP}

Former Miss America Vanessa Williams, pictured in April, will be head judge of this year’s competition. (Andy Wong/AP}

Vanessa Williams returns to Miss America

Looks like the Miss America Organization has changed its tune about Vanessa Williams.

The successful singer-actress, 52, was the first-ever African-American to receive the title in 1983, but was forced to resign 10 months after her win, following Penthouse magazine’s publication of nude photos from her past.

On Tuesday, the pageant gleefully announced that Williams will return to this year’s live broadcast on Sunday as head judge. Comments in a statement issued by CEO Sam Haskell made no mention of the scandal 32 years ago.

According to Vanity Fair, Penthouse paid more for the Williams photos than it had ever paid for a spread before, but Playboy passed on the material. Hugh Hefner apparently was one of Williams’ defenders, calling her a victim who didn’t have the opportunity to make her own statement.

In an interview slated to air on Thursday, Williams — who went on to Broadway, television and pop music fame — told “Good Morning America’s” Robin Roberts that the scandal lasted with her for many years, Us magazine reports.

It’s not likely she’ll elaborate on the statement when she joins Brett Eldredge, Taya Kyle, Danica McKellar, Kevin O’Leary, Amy Purdy and Zendaya in judging the competition, which airs on ABC at 9 p.m. Sunday.


It’s not every day a pop star makes a point about grammar.

English teachers across the world can rest assured knowing that Harry Styles is doing his part to promote proper spelling and grammar.

At a performance in Philadelphia last week, the 21-year-old singing idol motioned a fan to bring a sign to the stage that read, “Hi Harry, Your so nice.”

He put his hands on the banner, took a marker and corrected it, adding the missing apostrophe and the “e.”

A fan captured the action on video, perhaps adding millions to the number of people who know the difference between “your” and “you’re.”


“Marmaduke” comic strip creator Brad Anderson died at age 91. … Judy Carne, the “sock-it-to-me” girl on “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In,” died at age 76. … Jean Darling, who appeared in the silent-film series “Our Gang” and the original Broadway production of “Carousel,” died at age 93. … Telegraph Media, publisher of Oakland and Alameda magazines and The East Bay Monthly, has added Bay Woof, the free newspaper for local dog lovers, to its roster.


Singer Hunter Hayes is 24. .. Actress Michelle Williams is 35. … Singer Michael Buble is 40. … Actor Goran Visnjic is 43. … Actor Henry Thomas is 44. … Model Rachel Hunter is 46. … Actor-comedian Adam Sandler is 49. … Actor Hugh Grant is 55. … Musician-producer Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics is 63. … Actor Tom Wopat is 64. … Actor Topol is 80. … Actress Sylvia Miles is 81.

_ Staff, wire report

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