Latina Pageant Queen Could Become First Lesbian Miss South Carolina


Analouisa Valencia, a 19-year-old from South Carolina, identifies as a beauty queen, a Latina, an African-American and a lesbian. She hopes to add Miss South Carolina to that list this summer.

The Huffington Post reported that Valencia will compete in the Miss South Carolina pageant next July. If she wins, she would be the first openly gay woman to hold the title.

She currently holds the Miss Lyman title and was crowned Miss Electric City 2012. Valencia said she hopes winning Miss South Carolina will bring her one step closer to being crowned Miss America.

During an interview with The Advocate, she said she has been out since her freshman year of high school.

“Miss South Carolina is about being a role model to everyone, not only young girls,” Valencia says in her contestant video for the Miss South Carolina pageant. “Being born into a Hispanic and African-American family, I’m diverse in every way.”

Along with being diverse, she said Miss South Carolina should also be “stylish, successful, selfless, talented, and scholastic”, all qualities Valencia said she possesses.

Valencia  has been competing in beauty pageants for more than a decade and won Miss South Carolina Princess for Miss Spartanburg in 2000.

She has also been involved with Special Olympics South Carolina for many years in an attempt to be “an advocate for equality for everyone.”

 “If I can’t be that role model and be positive and comfortable in what I have to say then I shouldn’t have it as my platform,” she said.

Valencia is currently a student at Spartanburg Community College and a gymnastics coach. She plans on majoring in business at the University of South Carolina and hopes to one day open a gym to train elite gymnasts.

(Photo from Facebook via Huffington Post)