Kataluna Enriquez has been crowned Miss Nevada USA and is the the first openly transgender woman to compete in the Miss USA pageant.
GLAAD welcomed the news, with Head of Talent Anthony Allen Ramos issuing a statement:
“Kataluna Enriquez being crowned Miss Nevada is a huge win for trans visibility and sends a powerful, but simple message to the world: trans women are women,” said Anthony Allen Ramos, GLAAD’s Head of Talent. “Enriquez's presence on the Miss USA stage later this year will not only help to accelerate acceptance of the trans community, but also inspire so many other trans women who feel like they have not seen themselves represented in that space before.”
Miss Universe ended a worldwide ban on transgender women in the competition in 2012 following a campaign from GLAAD and other trans advocates.
Angela Ponce was the first transgender woman to compete on the world stage when she was named Miss Spain and competed in Miss Universe 2018.
Transgender model, producer and advocate Geena Rocero responded to Kataluna’s win:
I’m so proud of Kataluna’s trailblazing win especially as a fellow trans Filipina sister. This win will open doors for all pageant system to continuously advocate for the inclusion of trans women in all pageants not just in America but all over the world.Trans model, producer and advocate Geena Rocero
Last year, GLAAD worked with the Miss Nepal pageant to open its competition to trans women. Earlier this year, Leyla Bloom became the first out trans woman to appear in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.