Meet Miss Universe 2022 Who’s Also the Oldest Contestant to Ever Win
Recently, the Miss Universe organization caused a stir when they announced that starting in 2023, mothers and wives would be able to participate in the pageant. Now, it appears that they have taken another step toward greater inclusivity by crowning R’Bonney Gabriel, the first Filipina American and the oldest winner to date. This move showcases the organization’s commitment to diversity and breaking traditional norms.
At 28, R’Bonney Gabriel is the oldest titleholder in Miss Universe’s history.
In 2020, Andrea Meza from Mexico set a milestone when she was crowned Miss Universe at the age of 26, being the oldest woman to win the pageant until then. However, in 2023, R’Bonney Gabriel broke Meza’s record at 28 years and 300 days old, becoming the oldest Miss Universe winner to date.
This is a significant achievement, as had Gabriel waited until the following year, she would have been ineligible to compete in the pageant since the age limit would have been exceeded.
She’s also the first Filipina American to ever win the pageant.
R’Bonney Gabriel has made a significant achievement by becoming the first Filipina American to be crowned Miss Universe. With her father hailing from the Philippines and her parents getting married in Manila, her heritage plays a significant role in her life.
Gabriel shared her father’s story, saying, “My dad moved to America from the Philippines on a college scholarship with about $20 in his pocket. He wanted to pave a new life for himself.” Gabriel’s success didn’t stop there — last year she made history as the first Asian American to be named Miss Texas USA and Miss USA, a noteworthy achievement.
She works as a fashion designer.
In addition to pursuing her pageant aspirations, Gabriel is a multi-talented individual who wears many hats. She is the fashion designer behind her own brand, R’Bonney Nola, and also works as a sewing instructor. Her designs are not only stylish but also environmentally friendly, as they are crafted from recycled materials.
Gabriel has a passion for creating her own outfits and gowns, and her dedication is evident. In fact, the stunning dress she wore during her Miss Universe interview was a self-made creation.
After her win, Gabriel plans to use her platform to be a “transformational leader.”
During the final question round of Miss Universe 2022, Gabriel, Miss USA 2022, was asked, “If you win Miss Universe, how will you work to demonstrate this is an empowering and progressive organization?” Gabriel answered, “Well, I would use it to be a transformational leader.”
In her full response, she emphasized the significance of continuing to create sustainable clothing, offering sewing classes to vulnerable women, and utilizing her title to make a positive impact. “It is so important to invest in others, invest in our community, and use your unique talent to make a difference,” she added.
She also thinks that increasing the age limit for the contest would be a great idea.
During the competition, Gabriel expressed her desire for the Miss Universe pageant to open its doors to women of all ages. She stated, “I am 28 years old, and that is the oldest age to compete.” Gabriel also shared her favorite quote, “If not now, then when?” emphasizing the importance of seizing opportunities and not letting age define one’s potential.
What do you think about R’Bonney Gabriel’s big win? Who’s your favorite Miss Universe titleholder?