Founder of database MyHooha.org, Maura Deegan helps trauma survivors, those who have undergone physical, mental, or emotional experiences, find trauma -informed gynecologists and better women’s healthcare. This June she will hit the stage and compete for Miss District of Columbia USA 2022 in hopes of going on to Miss USA later this year.
The journey hasn’t been easy. A year ago, Maura—at the age of 25– had surgery after doctors found abnormal cells in her cervix. Her recovery left her feeling tired, in pain, and uncomfortable in her own body. She thought others blamed her for the illness her body had attacked her with. That she had somehow “brought it on herself.”
She was determined to help trauma survivors like herself find better healthcare advocates that were trained in post-trauma medical care. From that came MyHooha.org, a tongue-in-cheek declaration of self- care, self-worth. She feels the Miss DC USA stage is a perfect platform to bring MyHooha.org to the forefront, advocate for women’s healthcare and trauma survivors, and encourage women to reclaim their lives after trauma.
As importantly, Maura wants to ensure that young women are looking after their reproductive health. She says “People think cancer is an older person disease– that you don’t have to look out for signs of cancer when you’re young and healthy, but you do. You are your own best advocate. If I can encourage trauma survivors to feel comfortable enough to go get a routine pap smear, one that can possibly save their lives, that is what this passion project is about.”.
Maura earned her bachelor’s degree from American University in International Relations with concentrations in Peace and Conflict resolutions and European Studies. She currently works as an operations and administrative assistant for a financial risk, compliance, and investigations firm. She also has a background in corporate and social event production, planning anything from intimate dinners to multi-day, large-scale trade shows with 20,000+ attendees. Her dream event is the Grammys or a Milan Fashion week (and getting to take all the clothes home afterwards).
When Maura isn’t working, she loves to travel–32 countries and counting, go horseback riding, hike the DMV’s amazing trails, visit new brunch spots, sweat it out with a Bench Gym training session or a Pilates class, facetime her Grandmum (she’s 98!), or spend time with her dogs Sagen, a German Shepherd, Tipsy, a lab mix, and Coleslaw, a Foxypoo.
Born in DC but raised globally, Maura still thinks of the DMV as her forever home, having lived in Maryland, DC, and Virginia as well as attended high school in Mclean at The Madeira School. She is constantly being a tourist in her own city and loves exploring the museums, attending ballets at the Kennedy Center, and finding the best local wineries. She can’t wait to continue to explore the DMV as a titleholder and volunteer with some of her favorite charities.
The Miss District of Columbia pageant will be held at the Renaissance Hotel in Washington, DC on Saturday June 4th. Accomplished women from around the District will compete in interview, bathing suit, evening gown with the top 5 also competing in an onstage question. If you would like to attend and support Maura in person Prelims begin 1pm and Finals at 6pm. Tickets are available in person and online. She is still accepting sponsors and you can reach her on her Instagram @realmauradeegan. She thanks everyone for their support so far and hopes to make the DMV proud!