Thanks to online voters and her own prowess in front of a camera, Hilton Head Island resident Christen Cuevas will be the new face of a Savannah car dealership.
And she gets new wheels in the bargain.
The stay-at-home mom and part-time model and actress won a talent search May 19 to star in Coastal Chevrolet's commercials, billboards and print advertisements for the next year.
Cuevas resigned from her teaching job in Savannah this year to stay at home with her newborn. In the meantime, the 28-year-old decided to get back into acting and modeling, and that led her to enter the dealership's talent search.
She was selected from 40 contestants who entered a photo shoot and screen test April 7.
The public was then asked to vote online for its favorite candidate, landing Cuevas a spot as one of five finalists. She and the other finalists were given cameras to make their own testimonial commercial after test-driving a Chevy Silverado for a day. Five judges picked her as the winner.
Cuevas won a one-year lease of a fully loaded sport utility vehicle and will represent the dealership throughout the Coastal Empire over the next year.
"Making the commercial, I thought it was going to be easy," she said. "Then I found out how difficult it is set up a commercial by yourself. I had to find the right spot for the camera, figure out where to stand and come up with my own script and figure out how to show off my personality and the features of the Chevy Silverado."
Judges said Cuevas was charismatic and comfortable on camera.
"It came down to talent," said Neal Wilson, general manager of Coastal Chevrolet. "All five finalists had very similar characteristics, but we are very excited to have her. She has great enthusiasm and a good attitude, and the community responded to that in their voting."
Cuevas said she is unsure where her acting and modeling career will head. For now, "I'm going to see what happens," she said, "but mostly I'm having fun with this."