Fun fact: Vanessa is a former Miss Teen USA. That's right, at the age of seventeen with a final question answer that earned her a standing ovation, before millions of viewers on national TV, Vanessa captured the honored title of the Miss Teen USA 2002.
Last night's Miss Universe 2015 competition is drawing a lot of attention due to the now infamous Steve Harvey winner announcement flub. So, in keeping with pageant tradition, I decided to interview Vanessa and share her thoughts on last night's debacle.
So, first things first... You're a former Miss Teen USA. A veteran.
I am! 2002 was a good year.
What were your initial thoughts/feelings when you saw the whole SNAFU last night?
Empathy in the form of heartbreak, agony, and embarrassment. What an unfortunate order of events for both contestants. Publicity stunt or honest mistake? Brilliant television.
What do you think Miss PHILIPPINES is thinking right now?
Winning an internationally recognized title alone warrants the feeling of total shock and disbelief, but to graciously accept the position of 1st Runner-Up only to face resurrection at the expense of another contestant, I'm sure that Pia is in awe across the board. A bittersweet win.
This Steve Harvey ANNOUNCEMENT Flub...what does it mean for miss philippines?
Unfortunately, given the amount of press surrounding a televised event of this magnitude, rather than the media focus being on Pia herself and what she brings to the table as Miss Universe, we've shifted our interest to the crowning moment taking entirely away from the person behind the title. On the up-side, with "all publicity is good publicity," Pia has a unique opportunity to redirect this already glaring spotlight onto more important issues.
...What about for MIss Colombia?
A competition at this level is an investment. I doubt that this moment is something Miss Columbia will soon forget. However, much like Pia, there is an opportunity here for Ariadna to steer attention toward greater things. A make-or-break that requires you to strike while the iron is hot.
In Welcoming Miss Philippines to the Miss Universe Organization sisterhood, what's one piece of advice you could give her?
Authenticity is key. Be yourself, maintain your humble nature, and enjoy every moment. Welcome to the family, Pia!
Have a question for Vanessa? Leave it in the comments below.
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