You will represent Ireland in the Ms Galaxy contest, how would you describe your country to your fellow contestants?
Ireland is a country of beauty, wonderful people and amazing legends. Derby O Gill and the little people was one of my favourite films when I was a child which features various Irish legends including leprechauns and banshees as well as a very handsome young Sean Connery. My heritage originates in a wonderful seaside town called Howth in county Dublin where the best of Ireland are based, the people. Wherever you go in Ireland, the people are so friendly, have a great story and are always willing to show you how great the country really is.
Photo by Yolanda Kingdon
Did you face any moment of disappointment with yourself during your pageant journey and how did you overcome it?
Any pageant girl will tell you that there are so many ups and downs throughout their pageant journey but the downs are where you learn the most and if you can come back from those disappointments and hold your head high again, that is when you know you’ll make it. I’ve had many disappointments on my journey, including coming 1st runner up twice in the same competition two years in a row. I was also always disappointed when a winner was chosen in a competition that I was in, who went on to do nothing with the title, because I knew how much I would do with it.
But as I said before, each time I was disappointed I would pick myself up and look at what I could have done better, I’d ask myself, did I really put 100% into that? I’d also look at the queens who inspire me and what they did leading up to their pageant. After my last disappointment before this win, one of my pageant friends said to me “your time will come, trust me, this just wasn’t the right time” and sure enough I then went onto win the title of my dreams at exactly the right time.
Photo by Robbie Kelly
We’ve seen the stereotype portrayals of pageant contestants, a la Miss congeniality, spreading peace, love & beauty throughout the world. How do you think you’ll make a difference?
Interestingly, I got asked this in my interview. I do think I have a bit of a niche and bring something different to the pageant industry when it comes to my career and my platform. After coming out of university with a business and computer science degree I’ve worked my way up to becoming a technology consultant, “Geek by day, Beauty queen by night ” my day job is basically advising the banks on what their technology strategy should be.
Both the technology and banking industry are heavily male dominated and I do a lot of work in both industries to push for gender equality. Whether it’s working with young women in schools leading workshops to show them they can be whoever they want to be or leading campaigns and talks in the industry itself to raise awareness of the challenges that women still face today. I was also invited onto a talk show on Sky which is aired globally to talk about my platform and I’ll be going back on this month hopefully. I want to bridge the gender gap in the industries and break down the barriers so that we can pave the way for our future female leaders and help them to succeed.
The work that I do is all around empowering women which is exactly what the Galaxy system stands for.
What would you advise any young girl out there who has a dream of being a queen one day?
Anything I say may sound a bit cliché but it’s all true because I’ve lived it for many years.
- ·Firstly, use the disappointments as learning curves and don’t be afraid to fail (It took me a very long time to learn this)
- ·Learn from your role models, watch their journeys, how did they get to where they are today and use them as inspiration on your own journey.
- ·Win and lose graciously.
- ·Find a good pageant coach who will guide you on your journey to finding who you are.
- ·Find yourself. This is the best part of the pageant journey.
- ·Finally, never give up, even if it takes ten years to win your dream title. It will make it even more special.
Who is your ideal beauty queen and why?
Any beauty queen who never gave up on her dream. There are too many to name just one but this is why I love the industry so much because I’ve met the most inspiring women who are all on their own journeys and when they achieve their goals they are the first to help others move closer towards theirs.
Thanks to the beautiful Laura for the interview. Pageants News wishes you all the very best for Ms Galaxy pageant.