The Beauty of Filipinas

From The Editor’s Desk

The Beauty of Filipinas

Our Filipino culture highly values the beauty of Filipinas. When the 2018 Miss Philippines Catriona Gray was crowned Miss Universe in 2018, Filipinos world-wide were so proud … even though Gray was born in Australia and moved to the Philippines only after high school. Gray was the fourth Filipina to win the Miss Universe title following Gloria Diaz (1969), Margie Moran-Floirendo (1973) and Pia Wurtzbach (2015). By comparison, the United States claims eight titles, including Hawai‘i’s Brook Lee in 1997.

And who wasn’t proud when Angela Perez Baraquio, a Filipina from Hawai‘i won the Miss America pageant in 2001?

My sister Donna won the Miss Filipina-Hawai‘i Scholarship pageant on the Big Island in 1979 …

Here on Maui, the Miss Maui Filipina Scholarship Pageant is one of the longest-running pageants. It started in 1961 and has a long history of supporting scholarships as well as perpetuating our Filipino culture and showcasing talent, speaking abilities, grace, and yes, overall beauty—inside and out. It’s not easy to run such a pageant; it all starts with the difficult task of recruitment followed by intense training as most candidates are not quite pageant ready, production of the show, and marketing … and then in a month or so, competition for the Miss Hawai‘i Filipina Pageant—which Maui has won for the last five years!

In my own family, my sister Donna won the Miss Filipina-Hawai‘i Scholarship Pageant on the Big Island in 1979 and she was first runner up in the statewide Miss Hawai‘i Filipina pageant. I recall my sister working hard to perfect her talent, her pageant poses, her smile, her everything. And our family, especially my Dad Daniel and Mom Fecilitas, were so proud of Donna’s accomplishments. Plus Donna won a trip to the Philippines as part of her prizes. I really appreciate the hard work and sacrifices of the contestants, their family, and their friends and supporters.

Beauty pageants are a valued institution in our Filipino culture. They build character, self confidence, cement one’s Filipino cultural roots, and establish lifetime friends among the sisterhood of contestants.

Please continue to support the Miss Maui Filipina Scholarship Pageant and let’s help them to Be Empowered!