Mara title is new Miss Universe Ecuador; 46-year-old contestant Yajaira Kuishbi did not make it to the top 13

(CNN Spanish) — The jury of the Miss Universe Ecuador pageant has chosen 29-year-old Mara Tito from Guayaquil to represent the country at the international Miss Universe pageant in Mexico.

Mara is working as director and producer of the title Verduca, according to information provided to CNN by the competition.

Topic, the sister of former Ecuadorian presidential candidate John Topic in the 2023 election and contestant on Saturday night's beauty pageant, posted messages in support of her sister on her X account.

“Congratulations dear! That pride! Now all to Mexico”, wrote.

California-born 28-year-old American-Ecuadorian Nadia Mejia was first runner-up. Mejia is the daughter of Ecuadorian rapper Gerardo Mejia, who has lived in the United States for several years. Nadia Mejia was Miss California USA in 2016 and represented the community of the United States on Saturday after the pageant made changes to state, city or region representations.

Yajaira Kuishbi, 46, the oldest woman to compete in the event in Ecuador, failed to make it into the top 13 of the competition.

Yajaira Kuishbi competes at Miss Universe Ecuador on June 4, 2024 in Guayaquil, Ecuador. @CNBecuador/Giancarlo Ambrossi

The Miss Universe Ecuador pageant has attracted particular attention this 2024 because there is no longer an age limit to participate, and its first contestant, 46-year-old Quisby, is a chemical engineer born in the city of Asocuz. , in Kanar province, is the mother of an 11-year-old boy.

A few days ago, Yajaira Quizpi told CNN that she was proud to participate in a more inclusive competition.

“Companies have changed and are joining the changes to promote inclusion. I feel honored to be allowed here. We have broken down barriers and as women, we can move forward without fearing what they will say,” Quishby said.

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Elections took place on Saturday at Zoila Ugarte Park in the city of Machala in El Oro province, nine hours from Quito. The current Miss Universe, Nicaraguan Shaynice Palacios, attended the ceremony at the invitation of the organization.

Miss Universe Ecuador, like other pageants in other countries, is going through a different moment as the International Miss Universe Organization has changed some rules to promote a more inclusive and diverse pageant.

Saturday's contest in Ecuador featured seven women who were mothers, three divorced with children, three married with children, one married without children and one candidate with a daughter, according to data the contest provided to CNN.

Gillian Patton

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