About Ericka Dunlap
Ericka Dunlap is a native of Orlando who first rose to national acclaim when she was crowned Miss America 2004 on the historic runway of Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Just a few short months before, Ericka was a student at the University of Central Florida when she captured a part of history by breaking the color barrier and becoming the first and only Black woman to be crowned Miss Florida in the 80+ year history of Florida's most prestigious pageant.
As a community leader, and recognized as a notable "First" in various facets of her life, she models excellence that she hopes motivates others to persevere. Her aim is to offer common sense solutions to the problems facing District 5, where she and her family have been residents the majority of her life.
Over the past 14 years, she has created numerous opportunities for her influence and relationships to reshape the common misconception of the integral role of a Miss America. What remains constant about Ericka Dunlap is her genuine love for her hometown. Above and beyond her year of service as Miss America, Ericka has grown through years of expertise in various industries and utilizes each of those tools as assets to leading her teams and implementing her vision for District 5 and the City of Orlando.
Ericka is the Founder of the Crown Jewel Foundation, a philanthropic organization that invests in other local organizations that support the needs of young women and encourages them to boldly CREATE their futures and overcome the obstacle of mediocrity.
Her passion for District 5 MOVING FORWARD derives from 30 years of living in the district, supporting businesses within the district and increasing morale and community relations with those who call District 5 neighborhoods home. She leverages her voice as a national ambassador and community leader on issues ranging from veterans affairs to LGBT equities to homelessness. She is an advocate for youth excellence, enhanced quality of life for seniors, global women’s entrepreneurship, mental health wellness, small business support, career creation, restoration of rights & job sustainability, positive values and for those who are unable to speak for themselves.