25-year-old Dee-Ann Kentish-Rogers became the first black Miss Universe Great Britain over the weekend. The beauty queen told Buzzfeed News that the win is “surreal” and “humbling,” especially since she is the first black woman to take the crown in the pageant’s 66-year history.
Kentish-Rogers is from Anguilla, a British overseas territory, and she will represent Great Britain during the Miss Universe pageant later this year (yes, that’s the same pageant where Steve Harvey announced the wrong winner) hosted in the Philippines.
“I believe that this is the direction that the pageant has been going in for the last couple of years because Britain is a diverse nation, we are a multicultural society and it is time that that diversity is seen on a stage where other young black girls and girls of all ethnicities can see that this is something for everybody not just some of us,” Kentish-Rogers said.
She’s not just a beauty, she’s got brains, too. Kentish-Rogers recently passed her bar exams at law school, and the barrister-in-waiting also has a goal of promoting a global approach to feminism. Even better? She rocked a protective hairstyle during the pageant; Buzzfeed reports that she wore a dreadlocked up-do.
“Dee-Ann is a true role model for all women of all skin colours and with her dynamism off the stage, coupled with her presence on the stage, I genuinely believe Great Britain has a chance at the Miss Universe crown this year,” said Paula Abbandonato, the national director for Miss Universe Great Britain.