Better known to many locals as a bank teller at the Prescott branch of Bank of Delight, Micheyla Leigh Nealy could soon be very well-known in television, magazines, or billboards of the future.

Better known to many locals as a bank teller at the Prescott branch of Bank of Delight, Micheyla Leigh Nealy could soon be very well-known in television, magazines, or billboards of the future.
Or the end result of her ambitions, cosmetology, could be seen in front of a camera, even if she is not, but the stories of world famous supermodels have run the gamut from waitresses to college students to merely being at the “right place at the right time.” So, why not a bank teller?
When Nealy is not doling out dollars to Bank of Delight customers, she is the current Miss Southwest Arkansas USA in preparations for the Miss Arkansas USA pageant in Fort Smith in October.
Not to be confused with the Miss Arkansas preliminary to Miss America happening this week in Little Rock, Miss Arkansas USA sends its winner to Las Vegas for the Miss USA pageant.
“It has always been fun to meet new people and see new things. It has been a great experience,” Nealy, who has held several regional titles ranging from Miss Hempstead County to Miss Relay For Life, said.
With the premium put on a contestant’s attractiveness, the Miss Arkansas USA track has presented Nealy with the challenge of staying in top physical shape with the ability to look equally good in a swimsuit or evening gown. She says she does more walking, and running, than ever before, and she has practiced Zumba recently.
“It is a bit different than the Miss America track, and it is a great opportunity to go to Las Vegas for the Miss USA title,” she said.
Both pageants have their genesis as marketing promotions for swimsuit brands. Miss USA specifically began in 1952 as a fashion show for Catalina swimsuits, and in the present day, features competitors from all 50 states plus one to represent Washington, D.C.
Nealy is the daughter of Melissa Owens, also a teller at the Bank of Delight, and Luis Nealy, and as she prepares for run at Miss Arkansas USA, she also said she will pursue her certificate of arts in Cosmetology in one of the hot beds of the fashion industry, Dallas.
“Miss Arkansas USA, and a shot at Miss USA is a great goal, but I am still pursuing my education and ready for the next step; I want to have a career in the cosmetology & beauty field,” she said.
Of course, Dallas also brings to mind another set of beauties, the world-famous Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders, to which Nealy replies, “Oh yes, I know who they are. I would love to do it; I would love to have a shot at something like that,” Nealy said.
Sharon Caldwell, a restaurant owner in Hope who has known Nealy all her life, said “Micheyla is a sweetheart, who will do almost anything she is asked; she is a very positive person, and I think the world of her.”
Nealy is 2016 graduate of Spring Hill High School in neighboring Hempstead County, and she recently completed a year of general studies at the University of Arkansas at Hope. She said she is ready for the next step, which either takes her through Fort Smith or Dallas.
Nealy, age 20, is no stranger to local modeling or beauty contests.  She has done modeling work for a regional retailer, Martin’s in Hope, as well as promotional shoots for the new Watermelon Festival t-shirts.
During the 2015 Miss Hempstead County competition, Nealy swept nearly every category, including Miss Congeniality, Most Photogenic, Swimsuit, and Best Dress.
Nealy said that the pageant experiences have been “a real confidence builder for me,” and she said she feels prepared for a good run at the Miss Arkansas USA pageant.