Miss Gorg pageant seeks to promote accomplishments of trans women: organizers

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Singer Toni Santos Gado

Singer Toni Santos Gado

Miss Gorg 2018, a beauty and personality search for gay men and transgender women will launch in New York on March 31 in celebration of the International Transgender Day of Visibility.

“It’s a platform that lifts our community to a higher level,” said Peche Di, a Thailand-born transgender model, actress, videographer and founder of Trans Models Agency, in a statement to The FilAm. “I love being able to support a trans contest that is not based on jealousy. I love to see the contestants strive towards helping each other to be a better version of themselves.”

Organizers said the Miss Gorg winners will serve as ambassadors of goodwill for the trans community by bringing attention to the accomplishments of trans people around the world. It will also serve to open a conversation about the greater LGBT community and the challenging issues they face, such as sexual violence, access to jobs and medical care, and a society that at times views them with indifference or ridicule.

“It is a good venue to show the world that trans women are beautiful no matter what, a good venue to show love, peace, harmony and most of all respect for each other,” said Filipina singer Toni Santos Gado.

Miss Gorg 2018 is happening on March 29, at DHaven on 58th Street and 37th Avenue in Queens, New York. Peche Di will lead the panel of judges. New York State Assembly Member Brian Barnwell; NYC Council Majority Leader James Van Bramer; and J.R. Cehonski, Queens program manager of The LGBT Network, are joining her as pageant judges. NBC News’ Katherine Creag is hosting the event; Jenn Cuneta will provide musical entertainment.

Peche Di heads panel of judges. Photo: Peche website

Peche Di heads panel of judges. Photo: Peche website

The winner of this year’s Miss Gorg pageant will receive a cash prize of $2,000 and a one-year modeling contract with Trans Models NYC. The LGBT Network, an association of nonprofit organizations working to serve the LGBT community of Long Island and Queens, is this year’s event beneficiary.

March 31 is dedicated to honoring transgender people and raising awareness on various forms of discrimination they face worldwide, said organizer Elton Lugay, founder of The Outstanding Filipinos in America, and a reporter for the Inquirer.Net.

“We believe that spreading positive knowledge about the trans community helps dispel stereotypes and fears that often lead to prejudice,” he said in a statement.

Said Gado, a trans singer who is originally from Cagayan de Oro: “Love, peace and harmony are the things I aim to show everyone being a trans woman. It would be a perfect world when everyone else shows the same to each other. I believe that no matter what gender or status in life we have, we deserve to be treated nicely and without judgements, persecution and discrimination. I may have had my own share of discrimination being a trans woman, but I just ignore them and move on because I am proud of myself and comfortable of being real to myself and to others.”

A more pragmatic Peche Di stated, “We don’t have enough transgender representation in the media. Having a trans focused competition is a ticket to enter the entertainment and fashion industry.”

© The FilAm 2018

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