What looks particularly attractive to tourists wandering the city these days is that nearly 90 people from all over the world will come to New Orleans as it prepares to host the 71st annual Miss Universe pageant at the Morial Convention Center on January 14. Maybe it’s because there are so many beauty queens here.
The sold-out event is celebrating multiple changes this year, including a new host and new award categories for leadership. This is one of the first changes made by Pageant’s new owners.
Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA were purchased in October by Ann Jackaphon Jakrajtatip, CEO of Thailand-based media company JKN Global Group Pcl. The first woman to own the Miss Universe brand in its 71-year history, her Jakrajutatip also holds the renown of Asia’s first billionaire her transwoman.
“I grew up watching (Miss Universe) with my mother and grandmother,” said Jakurayutatip. “This is the premier beauty Olympiad in the world, but it’s not just about beauty, it’s also about iconic women: beauty, brains and leadership.”
Jakrajutatip himself embodies all three of these qualities. Born the eldest son of a middle-class Chinese family, Andrew Jakapon Jakrajutatip was never afraid to break down barriers or stand out from the crowd from his early days at an all-boys school in Thailand.
She spoke freely about her pre-transition days and named her son Andrew.
“I was bullied a lot at school because I was a woman trapped in the wrong body,” she said. I was able to gain my strength.Competed in a national debate competition.I became a national talk show host in Thailand…I believe that women are the best of themselves. I believe in the power to transform into versions.
Jakrajutatip has become both a media mogul and a celebrity in Thailand with her leading role as the only female in the Thai version of the Thai television show Shark Tank and the Thai version of Project Runway.
Her company, JKN Global Group Pcl, is Thailand’s number one content distributor and owns three TV channels.
“I became a millionaire at 38, a woman at 39, and a mother of two at 40.” “
“I am always looking for new investments and was drawn to the opportunity to own this global women’s empowerment platform.
In addition to changes within the pageant that will allow married women and women with children to participate starting next year, Jakrajutatip is about to release its first Miss Universe merchandise.
“We plan to make many products, including apparel,” she said. will be
Pageant fans will see more in Thailand in the future.
“As Thais, we pride ourselves on Thai excellence,” said Jakrajutatip. “I hope to bring Miss Universe back to Thailand every three years, just like (Donald) Trump brought Miss Universe back to America regularly when he owned it.”
Trump owned the Miss Universe pageant from 1996 to 2015.
In yet another change, this year’s winner will wear a new crown. The crown has its own name, ‘Force for Good’ and was unveiled in Bangkok on December 19th.
Centered on a 45.14 carat royal blue sapphire, it contains a total of 110 carats of blue sapphires and 48 carats of white diamonds.
But for now, the event’s attendees and global audience (including social media channels, which boast more than 23 million combined followers) know that current Miss Universe Harunaz Sandhu of India will be this year’s ‘Force for Good’. We will focus on New Orleans until we place “Force for Good” in . winner.
“I’m excited to be in New Orleans for the first time,” said Jakrajutatip. You can see that on the show. I’m going to show people all over the world why they should come to New Orleans. ”
On Saturday, contestants joined the Joan of Arc crew as part of a procession through the French Quarter, waving at onlookers and spinning umbrellas as captured by the pageant’s videographer.
The pageant winner will be crowned in the finals on January 14 at 7:00 pm at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.
New Orleans is the first to host the competition, which will be broadcast live to over 165 countries.
what: 71st Miss Universe Contest
when: Finals 14 January 2023, 7pm
Where: New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
How to watch: January 11 (Wednesday) Costume Show from 7:00 pm, January 14 (Saturday) Rehearsal from 11:00 am (tickets required, available on Ticketmaster)
The finals (sold out) on Saturday, January 14th will be broadcast live on Roku Channel.