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The queen who dared

Photos, except as otherwise designated, by Joe Whiteko / PNB

Tiffany Fallon
Photo courtesy of Playboy
"Tiffany Fallon posed for Playboy!" That juicy holiday rumor -- quickly confirmed -- rattled the pageant world like a sonic boom. The dark-haired dazzler who was Miss Georgia USA 2001 (and second runner-up to Miss USA) was now the December 2004 Playmate of the Month.

She was nude in the magazine, of course. That's what being a Playmate is all about. She wasn't wearing anything, not even a crown.

Ms. Fallon is hardly the first beauty queen to pose for Playboy. But there was something about "our Tiffany" getting naked that made pageant people gulp. It was almost as if they had done it themselves.
Heather Hogan crowns Tiffany Fallon
Her predecessor, Patti Dunn, crowns Tiffany Fallon as Miss Georgia USA 2001
Tiffany Fallon
Photo courtesy of Tiffany Fallon
There used to be a stereotype about queens who took off their clothes. It was supposed to be an act of desperation. A girl would get into a scandal, or be stripped of her crown, or wind up in the headlines over something silly she said or did. Then she would make the most of her brief notoriety by posing nude. A Playboy spread, if you could swing it, was a pink parachute out of the pageant world.

OK, the stereotype was never true. But now people know it's not true. Because who could be less scandalous than Tiffany Fallon? She's a down-to-earth Southern girl who's devoted to her family and friends. She's mature. "I'm 30," she proudly told PNB. "I'm the oldest Playmate this year."

 A woman like this could be a trend-setter, even though that's the last thing on her mind. "Being in Playboy was my choice," she said, "but I don't try to encourage anyone else to do it. It's every woman's decision."

Tiffany Fallon
With Braves baseball mascot
Tiffany Fallon
Tiffany Fallon in her days as an Atlanta Falcons cheerleader
For better or worse, the world is changing, and the pageant culture is changing with it. That's why PNB predicted recently that 2005 would be a watershed year for beauty queens in men's magazines. Because you just can't be mad at somebody like Tiffany.

 At her hometown autograph-signing at a popular Atlanta newsstand, old friends brought their toddlers to give her a hug. And when Ms. Fallon caught sight of a PNB reporter, she waved and rushed from her seat as if he were the celebrity and she the fan.
Ms. Fallon is certainly sexy, but she will never be a mere sex kitten. A middle-aged woman who was shopping at the newsstand just had to satisfy her curiosity when she heard that a Playboy centerfold was in the building. After she edged closer to take a look, our PNB reporter asked what she thought. "It's lovely the way her hair and eyes go together," said the woman, obviously impressed. "She looks like a beauty queen."

And so she did.
Tiffany Fallon and Paul Ossmann
Tiffany Fallon and Paul Ossmann when they co-hosted Miss Georgia USA
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