Miss Universe's first trans contestant hails from Spain

angela ponce, miss universe

Ángela Ponce was crowned Miss Universe Spain on Friday, becoming the first transgender titleholder of that pageant and the first trans contestant of the Miss Universe Pageant later this year.

After her win, she took to Instagram and wrote: “Bringing the name and colors of Spain before the Universe is my great dream. My goal: to be a spokesperson for a message of inclusion, respect and diversity not only for the LGBTQ + community but for the entire world.”

Miss Universe ended its ban on transgender contestants in 2012 after a messy battle between Donald Trump, owner of the pageant, and Canadian contestant Jenna Talackova. Paula Shugart, president of the Miss Universe Organization, said then in a statement that the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) was the force that had lifted the ban, not Talackova finding legal representation.

The Miss Universe Competition will air live November 26 on FOX from Las Vegas, Nevada.

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