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Miss America winners who launched TV careers

Miss New York Vanessa Williams is crowned Miss

Miss New York Vanessa Williams is crowned Miss America 1984 at the Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City, N.J., on Sept. 17, 1983. Credit: AP

The 2016 Miss America Competition airs Sunday (ABC at 9 p.m.) from Atlantic City. Will the winner join these five women who went on to find some degree of fame on TV?

Bess Myerson (1945, Miss New York). The only Jewish Miss America would become best known for her roles in New York politics, but she was also a panelist on several game shows, most notably from 1958-67 on "I've Got a Secret."

Lee Meriwether (1955, Miss California). On the 1973-80 crime drama "Barnaby Jones," she starred as the daughter-in-law and crime-solving partner of the title character (Buddy Ebsen). But she might be best known for playing Catwoman in the 1966 "Batman" movie spinoff of the hit TV show.

Mary Ann Mobley (1959, Miss Mississippi). She made many series guest appearances, but was best known for her supporting role on "Diff'rent Strokes" as Maggie McKinney (taking over the role from Dixie Carter). Maggie, an exercise show hostess, married Philip Drummond (Conrad Bain) during the 1984-85 season.

Phyllis George (1971, Miss Texas). She became one of TV's first female sportscasters when she joined CBS' "The NFL Today" in 1975. A decade later, she briefly co-anchored "The CBS Morning News."

Vanessa L. Williams (1984, Miss New York). The first African American Miss America resigned when it was revealed she had once posed for nude photographs that subsequently were purchased and printed by Penthouse magazine. But she rebounded nicely as a singer and actress, whose credits include starring roles in "Ugly Betty" and "Desperate Housewives."

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