Cebuana lass Cynthia Thomalla bested 51 other candidates from around the world in the fourth staging of the Miss Eco International pageant in Cairo, Egypt, on Friday night (Saturday morning in Manila).
Thomalla, a Tourism and Events Management graduate from STI-Maasin in Leyte, is the first Filipino woman to compete in this global tilt.
She earned her ticket to Egypt after winning the Miss Eco Philippines crown during the Miss World Philippines pageant last year.
The same national pageant also produced 2017 Reina Hispanoamericana Teresita Ssen Winwyn Marquez and the first Miss Multinational winner Sophia Señoron.
Thomalla was heavily favored to win even before she left the Philippines for her competition.
In Egypt, she advanced in the shortlist for the swimsuit, eco wear, and talent competitions.
During the question and answer portion, Thomalla was asked what she thinks is the most important thing that “beauty pageants add to people and the world.”
She replied: “I think the most relevant thing that we beauty queens can add to the world is raising awareness on our own causes. For example, the Miss Eco International is raising the advocacy of sustainable tourism and protecting the environment. And that is the main point of doing beauty pageants, by raising our voices to help the Earth.”
Southeast Asian delegates figured well in the competition.
Indonesia’s Astira Vernadeina finished second, while Vietnam’s Nguyen Thi Dung placed fifth.
Peru’s Kelin Rivera finished third, while Costa Rica’s Glennys Medina placed fourth.
The pageant’s official website said the competition “brings together representatives of different cultures and traditions from all over the world.” /jpv