Darcy (DeBok) Castro started her pageant career at the age of 19, capturing the title of Miss Portland 1996, an official Miss America Scholarship Program local pageant. She went on to win three consecutive local titles in the organization, representing the Portland metropolitan area at the Miss Oregon pageant. At the state level, she was a semi-finalist, talent winner and academic achievement winner. Her participation in the Miss America program propelled her to graduate from Portland State University with honors and begin a successful career in public relations and marketing.
She continued her service with the Miss America program as the Executive Director of the Miss Portland Scholarship Program, ushering her fist titleholder, Katie Harman, through the ranks of the program to become the first Miss America from the state of Oregon in 2001. She has also judged and consulted for local Miss America programs in Oregon, Texas and Connecticut.
After 20 years working and raising a family, Darcy has stepped back into pageantry, representing Connecticut in American Women of Service pageant, and taking the national title.
“Why a pageant in my 40s? I just had to stop hiding behind what was holding me back and go all in. So here I am, four kids, many moves and a career in non-profit marketing under my belt. Time to get back to my roots and dig out the rhinestones. No one’s getting any younger and there’s no time like the present! Take a look at what is holding you back, identify it, name it… then let it go. Live your life to the fullest and take care of yourself so you can love others with clarity and purpose.”
Darcy is the wife of Lieutenant Colonel Juan Castro, a pilot in the US Air Force, and mother to four – Ava, Ian, Isabelle and JJ. She is a marketing communications consultant and professional writer, serving businesses and individuals in the non-profit sector. Darcy is currently the Vice President of the Board of the New Fairfield Soccer Club, volunteer at the New Fairfield Community Thrift Store, supporter of the Friends of the New Fairfield Free Public Library, organizer of various personal care drives for local shelters and veteran groups, and provides pro-bono writing services to military service members transitioning to the civilian workforce. She is also a Commemorative Air Force Red Tail Squadron Ambassador.
Her past personal achievements include being the named the Junior Women’s Club of El Paso Provisional Member of the Year; serving as a two time President of the Catholic Mothers Council; exclusive private event staff serving dignitaries such as President George W. Bush, Mexican President Vicente Fox and Arizona Attorney General Janet Napolitano; being twice selected to serve as a Student Ambassador representing Portland State University at high visibility events; leading a public awareness campaign to save the Rockwall Country Library; and dancing with both the MacKenzie Dance Company and Tir Na Nog Irish Dancers.
Darcy is the current Elite National 2019 American Woman of Service and the 2019 Classic Ms. Queen of New England, 2019 Classic Ms. New England, and 2019 Classic Ms. US of America.
Her personal platform issue is two-fold. She is the creator of Cultivating Respect, a series of articles and a podcast exploring practical ways to foster greater respect for ourselves and within our communities. She also advocates for children of parents diagnosed with a brain tumor, based off her own experience. She is the author of "How I Feel About Dad's Brain Tumor," an insightful personal account, medical glossary and journal for children ages 7-13 who have experienced this unique a life-altering diagnosis within their family. Learn about both at DarcyCastro.com.
Outside of work, family, volunteering and pageantry, Darcy is an avid healthy living enthusiast and active in her local church. She enjoys running, group fitness, hiking with her dog, cooking, entertaining and cheering on her kids from the sidelines. Learn more at facebook.com/EliteCT2019.
Learn all about Darcy's journey in pageantry with this Pageant Planet podcast: