From an outsider like me who doesn’t necessarily follow Philippine pageantry history, Laura Lehmann’s coronation as the newest Miss World Philippines last Sunday night wouldn’t even be that surprising. No. Really. The model-host-sportscaster is statuesque, among the lucky ones possessing mythical white, pockmark-free skin. She’s effortlessly charming, armed with a wide smile and captivating eyes. In person, Laura measures up to those seemingly caricatural physical traits—she’s cordial and decorous, gentle and proper. Yet, Laura's answer to host and former Miss World Megan Young’s final this-is-it question about what the younger beauty queen can say about pageant nonbelievers only surprised us more.
“To anyone who doesn’t believe in pageants, I would ask them to take a look at the girls up on our stage tonight—because we have lawyers, we have architects, we have women of substance who are here today not only because of what they look like, but also because of what’s in their hearts, what’s in their mind, and because they’ve brought forth beauty with a purpose. They’re helping represent the Philippines and become the best version of the Filipina, and for me that’s something only to celebrate.”
What a smart young woman, my team and I thought to ourselves. (That was, after we thought how she looked really stunning in Mark Bumgarner!) We would have slept after Laura's Q&A, and the news of her winning would be non-news to us in the morning.
Now, to those not necessarily follow pageantry history, who exactly is Laura Lehmann? She’s a queen of all trades. Yes, legit! Let the captions and quotes from our previous interviews with her accompanying the photos gallery give you a glimpse of that and the rest of her inspiring journey!
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Photos courtesy of Lehmann's Instagram