Pam McKelvy, a Memphis news anchor, recently brought viewers to tears when she revealed she was shedding her wig and growing out her natural hair. McKelvy recently beat cancer and said she wanted to tackle another issue—self-acceptance.
Before a segment about women and their “crowns of glory,” the Tennessee journalist told viewers, “I’m going natural. No more relaxers to straighten my hair.” After the clip aired, McKelvy removed her wig, revealing a curly TWA.
“All right, this is it. This is my new hair,” she said.
McKelvy, a veteran journalist and former beauty queen, explained her decision to go natural.
“I made my choice also because I think about the message I send to young women about confidence and self-acceptance…The times are changing, and God’s delivered me with a brand-new spirit and a head full of hair, and here it is.”
McKelvy’s emotional moment marks yet another step in natural hair being seen as “mainstream.” While most news anchors—of all ethnicities—strive keep up with a certain “perfect” beauty standard, TV journalists of color are slowing redefining what’s seen as acceptable.
“I want everyone to know that no matter what you go through, it’s not about what’s on the outside, it’s about what’s on the inside,” McKelvy explained. “And I feel, on the inside, I am more radiant and beautiful than I’ve ever been.”