May 17th, 2010
09:00 AM ET

Monday's intriguing people

Rima Fakih

The 26-year-old from Dearborn, Michigan, was crowned Miss USA on Sunday in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pageant-watchers say Fakih, of Lebanese descent, is thought to be the first Arab-American and Muslim to wear the crown, The Detroit Free Press reports.

According to TIME magazine, Fakih was raised in New York, attended the University of Michigan and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in economics with a minor in business administration. She won the Miss Michigan USA title in 2009. She told TIME, “I grew up watching pageants with my father, but never knew I can really do it. Possibly because I was picked on a lot in school, and had a very shy personality. I can proudly say that I don't think I would have reached so high and come such a long way had I not went through the pain I did growing up.”

Detroit Free Press: Detroit celebrates Miss USA's first Arab-American winner

Time: Miss Michigan USA Rima Fakih on serving others

Geno Auriemma

President Obama is scheduled to welcome the NCAA champion University of Connecticut women's basketball team to the White House on Monday. The president will honor the Huskies for their second straight NCAA Championship and back-to-back undefeated seasons.

According to the university, since Auriemma’s arrival as head coach in 1985, the Huskies have been transformed from a program with only one winning season into one with six national titles, 10 Final Fours, three perfect seasons in 1995, 2002, and 2009 - and 32 Big East titles. Auriemma, who moved from Italy to Pennsylvania with his parents at the age of 7, was elected to the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006. He also has been named head coach of the U.S. National Team, which will compete in the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England. Geno Auriemma bio

Paul Sacco

The father of a missing Greeley, Colorado, hiker says he is ready to travel to Nepal today on a mission to find his 23-year-old daughter. "I'm not coming back without her," Sacco told The Denver Post. "Dad's supposed to protect her, and here I am 12,000 miles away. It's crazy."

On Saturday, Aubrey Sacco was scheduled to take a flight from Nepal to Sri Lanka, where she was to spend the last week of her six-month trip. But the newspaper reports she was last heard from on  April 20 when she e-mailed about plans to hike alone through Nepal's Langtang trail. Nepalese government officials, the Nepalese army and the U.S. Embassy began searching the park's 52 miles of trails almost a week ago but have been unable to find her.

Denver Post: Father heading to Nepal to search for missing daughter, 23

Jonathan Alter

There’s still more to learn about the most covered individual in the country. Alter, the Newsweek columnist and historian, reveals new details in his book “The Promise: President Obama, Year One,” which is scheduled to appear in bookstores on Tuesday. New York Times reviewer Michiko Kakutani writes that Alter “actually does give us a new perspective on the 44th president by providing a detailed look at his decision-making process on issues like health care and the Afghanistan war, and a keen sense of what it’s like to work in his White House, day by day.”

According to the newspaper, Alter reports that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was initially “too deferential to the president in meetings, just shy of obsequious”; that Defense Secretary Robert Gates, called “Yoda” by some White House staffers, was “almost certainly the most influential member of the cabinet”; and that Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner bonded with the president because “they had the same ‘no drama’ style.” Obama reportedly read Alter’s 2006 book about FDR’s first 100 days before taking office.

New York Times: Penetrating the process of Obama's decisions

Zach Lipson

The Nashville, Tennessee, student is fulfilling his dream of being involved in the University of Kentucky basketball program. reports that Lipson has never played a minute of organized hoops. But he’s earned the position as a student manager on the Kentucky team. The senior at Christ Presbyterian Academy has overcome medical odds. He has a spinal deformity and will never be over 4 feet tall. Lipson told the website, "I want to tell people you don't have to fall and beat yourself up over your problems. You can take them and help them make you stronger. You can turn a losing situation into a winning situation." Perseverance pays off for student manager

soundoff (167 Responses)
  1. Doug

    Clearly Miss Oklahoma was robbed because she gave an honest answer that most Americans feel but the liberal Democrat approved answer.

    You want real discrimination, here it is. Funny how the libs who cry about fake discrimination ingage consistantly in the real thing.

    May 17, 2010 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  2. Scott

    Beauty transcends all bounderies – and she is smoking hot!! Anyone who says she isn't is blind or just doesn't like non-blonds. This was definitely not a political choice that's silly since anyone who knows anything about the religious in Islam would know they are very much against beauty contest and someone like her wearing anything that revealing.

    May 17, 2010 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • david

      she is now the Solomon Rushdie of the world, a pariah for the muslim community and will need 24 hr protection or she will end up like van goeh

      May 17, 2010 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Robb

    Wow! What a bunch of crap. Unless you are Native American, your relatives came here as immigrants. They were naturalized. That's what made America what it is, the famous blending pot. Who cares what her ethnic background is? Have we stepped back into the past? Are we going to separate water fountains and the dark ages of racial, ethnic and religious persecution. If you remember from your history class, that's what brought the Pilgrims here in the first place – they wanted to escape religious persecution. So what, she's a Muslim. Not every Muslim is a terrorist, any more than every white supremist is a Timothy McVeigh, bent on blowing up government buildings. Fear is our greatest enemy, not a Miss USA contestant.

    May 17, 2010 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • david

      true, true, not every muslim is a terrorist, but......every terrorist is a muslim ...sooooo, draw your own conclusion

      May 17, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  4. CNNDebbie

    Good thing the pagent wasn't in AZ as they would have looked at her asked for her papers and labeled her a potential terrorist.

    May 17, 2010 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |

      She's beautiful.....i wonder if she's single

      May 17, 2010 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • RodentKing

      Sure that's why Obama won't go there.

      May 17, 2010 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Steven

      Yeah. Too bad they didn't hold it in Arizona. I'm so proud of that State!

      May 17, 2010 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  5. DrD

    Has Rush Limbaugh yet said that it is another Obama conspiracy?

    May 17, 2010 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  6. OldGoat

    Gorgeous body, but a so-so face. Ms. Oklahoma should have won but was booby-trapped with a Perez Hiltonesque situation.

    May 17, 2010 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
  7. Just dont call her da bomb

    If she is a real arab, shouldnt she be wearing the burka and veil to cover her suicide bomb?

    May 17, 2010 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      You are a complete and total moron. I'm suprised you know how to turn on a computer.

      May 17, 2010 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  8. I love Sandra

    I would give her the time of day (and night). 🙂

    May 17, 2010 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • david

      anybody who says they love sandra day o'conner needs to lay off the booze...sheeez, the sun is still up..ease up

      May 17, 2010 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |

    LMAO......seems like the racist are coming out of the woodwork.......SHE WON BECAUSE SHE'S BEAUTIFUL

    May 17, 2010 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  10. Tony

    Before you judge a person on how they look and what their background is, you should get to know him/her first.
    Give the new Miss USA a chance, and I bet she will AMAZE the world !

    May 17, 2010 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  11. A Muslim Woman

    Very typical. Very political. This win was all about the controversy. The franchize is dying so they need to stir up controversy. I guessed she would win before even seeing her...

    May 17, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  12. Ella

    To all of you out there. She is an American more than any of you. She is originally from Lebanon and she is Muslim. LIVE WITH IT!!!!!! She is smart, beautiful and she deserves it. Have some love in your hearts and embrace the diversity in this world and maybe the world will be a little better. Not all Arabs are the same!!! Kindly get educated and do not make idiots of yourselves!!!!

    May 17, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  13. Jaybally

    She, Miss Michigan" Rima Fakih" couldn't miss; a side from her Natural Beauty and Talents, She has that "Eva Longoria Parker" look !! Ole !

    May 17, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  14. Buckhippo

    Religion ruins everything

    May 17, 2010 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  15. LAUREN

    It just shows how idoit people are here in the U.S. Still hanging on to racists comments, actions, etc., My goodness grow up.

    May 17, 2010 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
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