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July 11, 2013

Miss Ohio Latina 2013 crowned

By Alexandra Murray

The legacy paved by the first Miss Ohio Latina in 2012 was passed down on June 29 by Tatiana Figueroa, the current holder of the crown, to Youngstown native Stephanie Miranda in Cleveland State’s Waetjen Auditorium.


Miss Ohio Latina is the official state preliminary pageant for National Miss Latina U.S. The winner of that competition represents the Latin community in the international Miss Latin America of the World competition.


Stephanie Miranda, Miss Ohio LatinaThe Miss Ohio Latina Pageant organization is geared towards Latin residents of Ohio between the ages of 19 and 27. According to their website, the pageant’s intent is to promote the ideas, culture, interests and aspirations of the U.S.’ fast-emerging Latino market.


As the ceremonies came to a close audience members cheered as actor and director Kenny S. Marrero and Claudia De Leon, manager of TSJ Media - the Cincinatti-based Spanish language news network - prepared to announce the winner of Miss Ohio Latina 2013.


Before the winner could be announced, Figueroa gave a final farewell to her beloved admirers.


“To my father, mother, and my supporting brother thank you for the continuous love, kindness and a helping hand that you never hesitate to offer to me,” Figueroa said. “I would not have become the woman that I am now if it were not for your continuous love, encouragement, support and wisdom.”


The director of Miss Ohio Latina, Yasin Cuevas, also went on to congratulate the former Miss Ohio Latina.


“Special thanks to Tatiana Figueroa for representing Ohio for the first time in Miss Latina U.S.,” Cuevas said.


As the program came to a close Figueroa crowned Stephanie Miranda the new Miss Ohio Latina 2013. The breathtaking beauty expressed that she is both eager and enthusiastic to fulfill her duties as this year’s winner of Miss Ohio Latina.


Just minutes before the crowning, first runner-up Miss Columbus Carolina Peguero not only shared excitement for fellow participant Miranda but a heartfelt moment as they embraced each other waiting for the judges to make their decision.


As the coronation came to a close contestants were reunited with their family and friends in Cleveland State University’s Music and Communication building.


Friends and family of Miss Westerville Latina Alyssa Carmona cheered her on and held up handmade signs that expressed their love and support.


“Miss Westerville is my little baby,” said a close friend of the native Puerto Rican. “We’ve been friends with her for almost 17 years. Even though she may have not won she has always been the one who doesn’t let failure affect her.”


Miss Akron Latina Stephanie Hernandez, a student at Bryant and Stratton College, also received love and affection from family members who had supported and encouraged her throughout the competition.


“It was a great experience,” Hernandez said. “I got to meet a lot of new people and girls. The pageant has opened a lot of new opportunities, and for that I am really grateful.”


This was especially true for Cleveland State University’s very own Miss Cleveland Latina Roshel Pizzaro, who said that she is excited to see what the future holds after graduation in the spring.