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Kris Jenner among panel of Miss America judges

Kardashian matriarch Kris Jenner is on a panel of seven judges who will pick next year's Miss America during a pageant in January in Las Vegas.

Jenner, a star of cable reality show "Keeping Up With the Kardashians," will join "Meet the Parents" actress Teri Polo and ABC's lifestyle anchor Lara Spencer on the panel announced Wednesday.

Also judging the pageant will be "Dancing With the Stars" dancer Mark Ballas, "The Bachelor" executive producer Mike Fleiss, "Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition" host Chris Powell and photographer Raul de Molina, a former photographer and host of Univision entertainment news show "El Gordo y la Flaca."

  • Slideshow Photos

    Julie Jacobson / AP

    Image: Teresa Scanlan

    Miss America 2011

    In dazzling gowns and sexy bikinis, 53 contestants competed for the pageant’s coveted crown.

  • Image: Teresa Scanlan

    Miss America 2011

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    Miss America 2011 -

    For the Miss America pageant's 90th year, 53 contestants competed in dazzling gowns and bathing suits in Las Vegas, Nevada on Jan. 15, 2011. “The View" host Joy Behar, actress Marilu Henner and country singer Mark Wills were among the seven judges.

    Left: Teresa Scanlan, Miss Nebraska waves to the audience after being crowned Miss America 2011 during the Miss America pageant.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Teresa Scanlan

    Miss America 2011

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    Crowning moment -

    Teresa Scanlan, Miss Nebraska, is crowned Miss America 2011 during the Miss America pageant. Scanlan won a $50,000 scholarship and a yearlong run with the crown at the competition at the Planet Hollywood casino-resort in Las Vegas, giving the Cornhusker State its first-ever win at the pageant.

    "And I never passed up a cookie on my journey here," Scanlan said.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Miss Nebraska Teresa Scanlan reacts after being announced Miss America 2011 in Las Vegas

    Miss America 2011

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    Taken by surprise -

    Miss Nebraska Teresa Scanlan (R), 17, reacts after being announced Miss America 2011 during the Miss America pageant. Miss America 2010 Caressa Cameron (L) prepares to crown her.

    Scanlan plans to study American politics at Patrick Henry College in Virginia after her reign as Miss America. She said she also hoped to attend law school, become a judge and eventually a politician.

    Reuters / Reuters
  • Image: Miss Nebraska Scanlan is mobbed by other contestants after being crowned Miss America 2011 during the Miss America Pageant in Las Vegas

    Miss America 2011

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    Embracing the competition -

    Miss Nebraska Teresa Scanlan, 17, is mobbed by other contestants after being crowned Miss America 2011. Scanlan is youngest winner ever in the pageant's history after a night of being judged for poise, talent, fitness and knowledge.

    During the interview portion of the competition, Scanlan told the audience that when it comes to the website Wikileaks, security should come before public access to government information.

    "When it comes to the security of our nation, we have to focus on security first and then people's right to know, because it's so important that everybody who's in our borders is safe and so we can't let things like that happen, and they must be handled properly," she said.

    Reuters / Reuters
  • Image: Alyse Eady

    Miss America 2011

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    Puppet master -

    Alyse Eady, Miss Arkansas, performs a ventriloquist act to "I Wanna Be a Cowboy Sweetheart" in the talent competition during the Miss America pageant.

    "It's a lot easier to do than it looks," Eady said of ventriloquism in an interview with the Southwest Times Record. "You put your teeth together, but P is a hard letter, and so are B, W and M, because people move their lips on those letters. You have to mix sounds, sometimes, to get those letters and words."

    AP / AP
  • Image: Ashley Melnick

    Miss America 2011

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    Strutting it -

    Miss Texas, Ashley Melnick, walks on stage during the swimsuit competition during the 2011 Miss America pageant. Melnick introduced herself as being from "the home of Superbowl XLV, where everything's super in my state."

    AP / AP
  • Image: Miss Nebraska Teresa Scanlan plays the piano during the talent portion of the Miss America Pageant in Las Vegas

    Miss America 2011

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    Struck a chord -

    Miss Nebraska Teresa Scanlan, 17, plays "White Water Chopped Sticks" on the piano during the talent portion of the Miss America pageant in the Theatre for the Performing Arts at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

    Reuters / Reuters
  • Image: 2011 Miss America Pageant

    Miss America 2011

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    Walking the runway -

    Teresa Scanlan, Miss Nebraska, is filmed as she competes in the swimsuit competition during the 2011 Miss America pageant. Scanlan went on to be crowned the new Miss America. She's the youngest Miss America since the pageant implemented age limits in 1938.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • Image: Claire Buffie

    Miss America 2011

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    Glowing in a gown -

    Miss New York, Claire Buffie, walks on stage during the evening gown competition during the Miss America pageant. Buffie competed with her "Straight for Equality: Let's Talk" platform, championing for gay rights.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Emoly Wes, Kayla Martell, Djuan Keila Trent, Jalee Fuselier

    Miss America 2011

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    The long stretch -

    From left: Emoly Wes, Miss Oklahoma, Kayla Martell, Miss Delaware, Djuan Keila Trent, Miss Kentucky and Jalee Fuselier, Miss Hawaii, wait for their turn to perform in the talent competition during the 2011 Miss America pageant.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Jalee Fuselier, Jacquie Brown, Teresa Scanlan, Emoly West, Alyse Eady,

    Miss America 2011

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    Holding tight -

    The five finalists, from left, Jalee Fuselier, Miss Hawaii, Jacquie Brown, Miss Washington, Teresa Scanlan, Miss Nebraska, Emoly West, Miss Oklahoma and Alyse Eady, MIss Arkansas, stand together during the Miss America pageant, Jan. 15, 2011 in Las Vegas.

    Miss Arkansas Alyse Eady won $25,000 as first runner-up, while Miss Hawaii Jalee Fuselier won $20,000 for third place.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Kelsi Crain, Stephanie Denise Steers, Becky MInger, Lauren Werhan

    Miss America 2011

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    Shaking it up -

    From left: Miss Louisiana, Kelsi Crain, Miss Oregon, Stephanie Denise Steers, Miss Ohio, Becky Minger and Miss Kansas, Lauren Werhan, dance during the opening number of the 2011 Miss America pageant.

    AP / AP
  • Image: Adrienne Leigh Core

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    Heartfelt -

    Miss North Carolina, Adrienne Leigh Core, left, waits for the start of the Miss America pageant, on Jan. 15, 2011, in Las Vegas.

    AP / AP

The pageant's finals are scheduled for Jan. 14 at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino and will air live on ABC.

The judges will interview the state contestants and judge them in preliminary competitions during the week leading up to the pageant, eventually picking a winner based on looks, talent and interviewing skills.

This year's winner, Teresa Scanlan of Nebraska, won at age 17 and is the youngest Miss America since the pageant implemented age limits in 1938.

The pageant will be hosted by "The Bachelor" host Chris Harrison, who's at the start of a two-year deal hosting the competition.

Miss America started in 1921 as a bathing revue. Today, the Miss America Organization touts itself as the country's largest provider of scholarships to young women, giving more than $45 million last year.

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