Dorothy Benham was crowned Miss America 1977 on September 11, 1976. She is a classically trained lyric-coloratura soprano having performed in stage productions from opera to Broadway. Dorothy was an original cast member of the Tony and Grammy award winning Broadway show "Jerome Robbins' Broadway". She has performed with symphony orchestras as a guest artist throughout the country including the lead role of Sonia in the Connecticut Opera Company's production of "The Merry Widow", and was chosen by Peter Schickele (aka PDQ Bach) for his composer showcase at the Lincoln Center in New York City. Other highlights in her musical career have been performing with Bob Hope and Doc Severinson and the Minnesota Orchestra, and at the Bicentennial Celebration for the Statue of Liberty for the President and Mrs. Reagan. She has been a frequent musical guest on the "Hour of Power" from the Crystal Cathedral.
She has produced and released four voice recordings including "The Lord is my Light", "Christmas", "From the Heart", and "The Crystal Cathedral Collection".
Dorothy has worked in television and radio as a model and spokeswoman and for many years was a featured performer and co-host at the Miss America Pageant. She has twice been a judge for the Miss America Pageant, and has been a judge at Miss Oregon 2007, Miss Florida 2008, Miss North Dakota 2009, Miss Georgia 2009, Miss Oklahoma 2011, Miss North Carolina 2012 , North Carolina's Outstanding Teen 2012 and Miss South Carolina 2012.
Dorothy is the mother to six children and grandmother to two.