Black Jew Yityish Aynaw Crowned Miss Israel 2013
By Toyin Owoseje | March 2, 2013 5:31 AM EST
A 21-year-old former army officer has made history after becoming the first Ethiopian-born contestant to be crowned Miss Israel.
Yityish Titi Aynaw from Netanya, who immigrated to Israel with her family when she was 12, was entered into the annual pageant by a friend, and had no previous modelling experience.
She took home the crown after a panel of judges awarded her title at the International Convention Center Haifa earlier this week.
During the competition, Aynaw said she hoped "to represent all Israelis" and also named American civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. as one of her role models.
"He fought for justice and equality, and that's one of the reasons I'm here: I want to show that my community has many beautiful qualities that aren't always represented in the media," she said.
Recalling her journey to Israel as a child, she insisted that being "thrown into the deep water" helped her get used to her new life.
"My aliyah [which translates to "a look to the future," in Amharic ] was pretty tough," said Aynaw.
"A new language, a modern society. I'm lucky to have had a friend, Noa, who befriended me from the start and helped me out. I didn't study in a ulpan. I was thrown into the deep water and learned the best that way."
The beauty queen, who has been working as a saleswoman at a clothing store since her army discharge now plans to venture into modelling "to change attitudes to dark-skinned models. I'd love to become the first Israeli (TV) host, the Tyra Banks of Israel."
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Celebrities Who Were Victims of Rape: Psychological and Physical Effects of Rape
- Still The World Champions: Team USA Overpowers Serbia, 129-92 To Win 2014 FIBA World Cup [PHOTOS]
- Kanye West, Ben Affleck, Serena Williams Are Victims Of Migraines: Ways To Tackle It
- Men’s Tennis’ Grand Slam Winners Of 2014 – Wawrinka, Nadal, Djokovic, and Cilic
Join the Conversation
- Joan Rivers Left $150 Million Legacy To Her Only Child, Care For Her Four Pooches Included In Her Will
- ‘General Hospital’ Spoilers For Sept. 15-19, 2014: Ava And Morgan Talk About The Baby
- Kendall Jenner Distances Self From The Kardashians, Prefers Kim Kardashian West To Be Absent In Her Modelling Shows
- Paul Walker's Daughter Paid Heart Touching Tribute To Her Father On His Birthday
- Kim Kardashian-West Frantically Tries For Second Baby To Match Kate Middleton's Pregnancy Timeline
- iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus vs Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8: Performance, CPU and Health
- Google Android Lion vs Apple iOS 8: Why Make the Big Switch
- Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs. OnePlus One – Can The Underdog Trump The Monster?
- US Government Threatened Yahoo to Provide User Data: If not Pay a Fine of $250,000 per day
- Optus Successfully Launches Optus 10 Satellite That Will Improve TV, Internet, Phone & Data Transmission In Australia
- 7 Reasons Why Atlassian Topped BRW’s Best Place To Work In Australia 2014 List
- Pope Francis Blasted For Defying Catholic Doctrine, Marries 20 Couples Who Have Cohabited And Had Children In No Else But St Peter's Basilica