|Miss USA 2009|
|Date||April 19, 2009|
|Venue||The AXIS, Las Vegas, Nevada|
Miss USA 2009 was the 58th Miss USA pageant, held at the Theatre for the Performing Arts in Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 19, 2009. At the conclusion of the final night of competition, Kristen Dalton of North Carolina was crowned by outgoing titleholder Crystle Stewart of Texas.
The event was hosted by Billy Bush of Access Hollywood and actress Nadine Velazquez; Bush returned to host the pageant which he last emceed in 2005. He had previously co-hosted Miss USA 2003 with Daisy Fuentes and Miss USA 2004–2005 with Nancy O'Dell. Entertainment was provided by Kevin Rudolf who performed "Let It Rock" during the swimsuit competition and The Veronicas performed "Untouched" during the evening gown competition.
The competition was broadcast in High Definition for only the second time in history.
Delegates representing the fifty states plus the District of Columbia competed in the pageant, and arrived in Las Vegas on April 2. Miss USA Kristen Dalton represented the USA at the Miss Universe 2009 pageant, where she reached the Top 10.
Pageants were held from June 2008 to January 2009 to select the representative for each state. During the final show on April 19, the fifteen delegates with the highest average scores from the preliminary competition were announced. The top fifteen competed in the swimsuit competition. The top ten delegates from swimsuit competed in evening gown. The top five delegates from the evening gown competition (not averaged composite scores from both competitions) competed in the final question round to determine the winner. The judges' composite score was shown after each round of competition for only the third time since 2002.
|Miss USA 2009|
The Miss USA 2009 delegates were:
|Alaska||Jessica Irene Nolin||Palmer||22|
|Arizona||Alicia-Monique Blanco||Phoenix||22||5'8"||2nd runner-up|
|Arkansas||Chanley Painter||Conway||24||5'9"||Top 10|
|California||Carrie Prejean||La Jolla||21||5'10"||1st runner-up||Later dethroned due to same-sex marriage controversy after the conclusion of the pageant|
|Colorado||Patrice Williams||Colorado Springs||22||5'7"|
|Connecticut||Monica Mary Pietrzak||Manchester||25||5'11"||Top 15|
|District of Columbia||Nicole White||Washington, D.C.||20||5'8"||Previously Miss District of Columbia Teen USA 2004|
|Florida||Anastagia Pierre||Fort Lauderdale||20||5'9"||Previously Miss Florida Teen USA 2004|
Later Miss Bahamas Intercontinental 2010 and Miss Bahamas 2011
|Georgia||Kimberly Gittings||Lilburn||20||Top 15|
|Hawaii||Aureana Tseu||Mililani Town||25||5'7"||Previously Miss Hawaii Teen USA 1999|
|Idaho||Melissa Weber||Boise||27||Top 15|
|Indiana||Courtni Hall||Crawfordsville||20||5'9"||Previously Miss Indiana Teen USA 2004|
|Iowa||Chelsea Lynn Gauger||Ankeny||20|
|Kentucky||Maria Elizabeth Montgomery||Danville||19||5'10"||4th runner-up|
|Louisiana||Lacey Minchew||Baton Rouge||25||5'7"||Previously Miss Teen America 2002, represented Georgia|
|Maine||Ashley Underwood||Benton||24||5'8"||Later contestant in Survivor: Redemption Island|
|Maryland||Gabrielle Carlson||Marion Station||24|
|Massachusetts||Alison Cronin||Weymouth||21||Previously Miss Massachusetts Teen USA 2005|
|Michigan||Lindsey Tycholiz||Sterling Heights||26|
|Minnesota||Erica Nego||Plymouth||24||Top 15||Later Miss Universe Ghana 2011|
|Mississippi||Jessica Lauren McRaney||Terry||23||Previously Miss Mississippi Teen USA 2004|
|Nebraska||Meagan Winings||Atkinson||23||Previously Miss Nebraska Teen USA 2004|
|Nevada||Georgina Vaughan||Las Vegas||21||5'10"||Previously Miss Nevada Teen USA 2006|
|New Hampshire||Christy Dunn||Laconia||26|
|New Jersey||Kaity Rodriguez||Clifton||24|
|New Mexico||Bianca Matamoros-Koonce||Albuquerque||23|
|New York||Tracey Chang||New York City||26||5'7"|
|North Carolina||Kristen Dalton||Wilmington||22||5'7"||Miss USA 2009||Daughter of Jeannie Boger, Miss North Carolina USA 1982|
Sister of Julia Dalton, Miss North Carolina Teen USA 2008 and Miss North Carolina USA 2015
|North Dakota||Kelsey Erickson||Grand Forks||22|
|Rhode Island||Alysha Castonguay||Woonsocket||22||5'6"||Previously Miss Rhode Island Teen USA 2002|
Previously Miss Teen America 2003
Previously Miss Teen Galaxy 2005
|South Carolina||Stephanie Murray Smith||Goose Creek||21||5'7"||Top 10||Later contestant in The Amazing Race 17|
|South Dakota||Jessica Rowell||Sioux Falls||22||5'7"|
|Tennessee||Kristen Motil||Franklin||24||5'9"||Top 10|
|Texas||Brooke Daniels||Tomball||22||5'9"||Top 10|
|Utah||Laura Chukanov||Salt Lake City||22||5'9"||3rd runner-up|
|Virginia||Maegan Phillips||Quantico||22||Top 15|
|Washington||Tara Turnure||Seattle||23||Sister of Tracy Turnure, Miss Washington USA 2010|
|West Virginia||Jessi Pierson||Milton||21||5'7"||Top 10||Miss Photogenic|
|Wisconsin||Alexandra Wehrley||Pewaukee||21||5'8"||Later worked as a television host|
|Wyoming||Cynthia Pate||Casper||22||Miss Congeniality|
Main article: Miss USA 2009 same-sex marriage controversy
During the 2009 Miss USA pageant, Miss California Carrie Prejean, was asked by openly gay pageant judge, Perez Hilton, whether she believed every state should legalize same-sex marriage. She responded that she did not. After the pageant Hilton made negative comments about the contestant and told ABC News: "She lost it because of that question. She was definitely the front-runner before that," leading some to believe that the answer directly had caused her to lose the competition. Prejean stated that Miss California USA officials had pressured her to apologize for her statement and "not talk" about her Christian faith.
Several politicians and commentators assailed Hilton and defended Prejean for honestly stating her personal beliefs.
Following the pageant, Prejean hired a Christian public relations firm, and appeared in a television advertisement by the National Organization for Marriage. However, on June 10, 2009, Prejean again stated that her question caused her to lose her title when she learned she was fired by Donald Trump. Miss California USA officials state that her answer had nothing to do with her termination, citing continued breach of her contract instead.
In keeping with co-owner NBC Universal's "Green is Universal" environmental initiative, the Miss Universe Organization announced that Diamond Nexus Labs would become the official jewelry sponsor for the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants. DNL 's man-made gemstones are "all synthesized in clean labs using environmentally friendly processes". Diamond Nexus Labs will create a custom-designed crown for Miss USA 2009, as well as for the Miss Universe and Miss Teen USA pageants later this year.