Miss Nevada USA Is the First Trans Woman to Hold the Title

The Stonewall riot, a significant event that took place at a bar in Greenwich Village, NYC, in 1969, marked the inception of Pride. This has since evolved into an annual month-long celebration and advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community. Just as we were wrapping up this year's pride month, Kataluna Enriquez created a historic moment worth celebrating. She shattered barriers to become the first openly transgender woman to clinch the title of Miss Nevada USA, setting her on the path to be the first trans woman to compete in Miss USA (scheduled for November).

In 2021, Kataluna Enriquez carved a name for herself in the history books. She started her victorious journey by clinching the title of Miss Silver State USA in March, becoming the first trans woman to ever win the title. This was just a stepping stone for her, as this event is the precursor to the Miss Nevada USA beauty pageant. Enriquez is no stranger to beauty pageants; she took part in her first transgender beauty competition in 2016 and even won the prestigious title of Transnation Queen USA in the same year, according to W Magazine.

Far beyond her pageantry accolades, Kataluna Enriquez is a force to be reckoned with. Her talents are as diverse as designing her own elegant gowns (that she donned with unparalleled grace during her Miss Nevada USA competition), to holding down an administrative role in healthcare and fiercely advocating for human rights. In essence, there's no area where she doesn't excel.

In her position as the current Miss Silver State USA, Kataluna Enriquez has initiated a campaign known as #BEVISIBLE. The campaign aims to tackle prejudice and discrimination by promoting the power of vulnerability. Enriquez herself has been candid about her personal battles as a transgender woman of Filipino-American descent. She's openly discussed being a survivor of physical and sexual abuse and recalled instances of being bullied during her high school years due to her gender identity. Enriquez has leveraged her influential position to underscore the significance of mental health and promote organizations that earnestly advocate for LGBTQ+ individuals.

""I stand today as an empowered transgender woman of color," Enriquez stated in a conversation with the Las Vegas Review Journal after her victory at Miss Silver State USA. "In my personal journey, I have realized that my uniqueness does not belittle me but instead enhances me. My distinctiveness is what sets me apart, and I am confident that it will carry me through all walks of life." If Enriquez manages to secure the Miss USA title, she would be the second transgender woman to partake in the Miss Universe contest. As of now, you can look forward to supporting her when she steps on stage for the Miss USA competition on November 29th."

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