My Goals as Miss Virginia 

As Miss Virginia for America 2020

Courtney Phillips Kessenich is a mental health warrior. Her outreach initiative Hope for Invisible Wounds provides resources and tools for those suffering from mental anguish. Reaching over 6000 people daily, she works to provide a voice to the voiceless and make invisible wounds visible.


Greater awareness and normalization are greatly needed. 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. suffers from a mental health condition and of those 56% have not sought care. With a goal to bring awareness to mental illness and help destigmatize seeking care. She's using her voice to bringing attention to invisible wounds by sharing what resources are available and partnering with organizations such as the World Federation for Mental Health and Mental Health America.


Courtney suffers from anxiety following multiple traumas throughout her life. She hopes to show that through proper mental health care and healthy coping mechanisms that it's possible to persevere

Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, Courtney more than half of her life in Texas and on any given day may tell you she is from or the other since they are both "home." She moved to Houston and lived there for over a decade following graduate school. 


After all those years on the Gulf Coast, she was recruited to move to D.C. and moved to Washington, D.C. for work. She has fallen in love with everything the District has to offer and can’t imagine living anywhere else. She has two fur babies at home – a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Lily, and a grey tabby cat, Belle.

When she was a child, she wanted to be a teacher. Now in her career, she's able to help educate people through communications. Courtney's been able to implement STEM programs in low-income schools, develop outreach at the top Cancer Center in the country, work closely with wounded warriors, help sexual assault victims as a speechwriter and work to end Veteran suicide. 


She has over a decade of marketing and public relations experience working with Fortune 500 companies, healthcare institutions, the government and Tier One media. Courtney has a Master of Science in Marketing and Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and International Business from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. 

In her free time, she enjoys traveling to new places and has already been to 16 countries, trying new Vegan-friendly restaurants, dancing in the dark on a spin bike, hiking, writing her future novel and supporting the LSU Tigers!

Her newest venture includes pageant and confidence coaching. If you'd like to book Courtney for a presentation on mental health or coaching. Contact her at