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Miss Nevada will be 1st transgender woman to compete for Miss USA

Published: Jun. 29, 2021 at 12:39 AM CDT
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LAS VEGAS (KVVU) - With a platform of raising awareness for the transgender community, the newly crowned Miss Nevada will become the first openly transgender woman to compete in the Miss USA pageant.

Kataluna Enriquez, 27, will be the first openly transgender woman to compete for the title of Miss USA after being crowned Miss Nevada on Sunday. She beat 21 other candidates to represent the state in the upcoming Miss USA pageant, set for Nov. 29.

Her road to the crown has not been that of beauty queens before her, and she contends discrimination is something she, like all transgender people, must face.

“I didn’t have the easiest journey in life. It was a struggle for a moment. I struggled with physical and sexual abuse. I struggled with mental health. I didn’t have much growing up. I didn’t have support. But I’m still able to thrive, and I’m still able to survive and become a trailblazer for many,” Enriquez said.

Awareness of the transgender community is now her pageant platform.

“Don’t let your differences determine what you’re capable of. Your differences is anything what makes you unique, and you are capable of anything as long as you believe in yourself,” Enriquez said.

In March, Enriquez became the first transgender titleholder crowned Miss Silver State USA, the biggest preliminary competition for the Miss Nevada USA pageant.

If she wins the Miss USA pageant in November, she would be the second transgender woman to join the Miss Universe pageant after Spain’s Angela Ponce in 2018.

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