Beatrice Luigi Gomez was crowned Miss Universe Philippines during the finals held September 30 in Panglao, Bohol. The representative of Cebu City bested 27 other candidates for the title. She will represent the Philippines at the 70th Miss Universe competition in Eilat, Israel in December. She also won the evening gown and swimsuit portions of the evening.
The 26-year-old beauty queen works as community development worker and is a navy marines reservist. It was a historic win, too, as she is the first openly-queer winner of the pageant. In her previous interviews, Gomez has been candid about her relationship with her girlfriend of almost seven years, Kate Jagdon. She also expressed her confidence that the Philippines was ready for an out and proud member of the LGBTQ+ to represent them at the Miss Universe pageant. As it turns out, she was correct.
“I honestly believe that our country has definitely been in a long way in battling our fight for equality especially for the LGBTQIA+ community. Our country has been very supportive and I definitely think we are definitely ready to send someone, an LGBTQIA+ member to the Universe,” Gomez said during the Top 10 Q&A when asked if the Philippines is ready to send a member from your community to the Miss Universe pageant.
Pageant veteran Katrina Dimaranan of Taguig was named Miss Universe Philippines Tourism, while Cavite’s Victoria Velasquez Vincent bagged the Miss Universe Philippines Charity title. Former Asia’s Next Top Model winner Maureen Christa Wroblewitz of Pangasinan and Cebu Province’s Steffi Rose Aberasturi placed first and second runners-up, respectively.