First female ringmaster takes reins at Ringling Bros. circus

For the first time in history, a female ringmaster is running the show at Ringling Bros.

It took the circus 146 years and a nationwide search, but the opportunity to perform as the first female ringmaster seemingly fell into Kristen Michelle Wilson's lap.

"I said, 'I have to throw my hat in the ring when opportunity like this comes along.' You go for it!" Wilson told WKMG-TV.

Wilson plays the role so naturally that the fact that she is woman doesn't even come to mind.

"This is not a gender-specific role. This is all about being strong and being in command," she said.



Originally from Tallahassee, Wilson has spent much of the last decade performing in any way she could.

"I was a television news reporter, a summer camp counselor. I've taught dance. I was a videographer. I filmed weddings and county commission meetings," she recalled.

Wilson said this is a dream job, and she is proud of the message it sends.

"We can do anything. Women are phenomenal and capable and strong."

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