Meet the MASI contestants: 5 vie for crown
The 20th Miss American Samoa Inc. beauty pageant will feature five beautiful young local women vying for the crown of Miss American Samoa 2012- 13 on Oct. 19, 2012.
The five contestants are Arielle La’asaga Tuilefano Falaealili Maloata, Casuallen Iulieta Fale, Charity Anna Porotesano, Josephine Maimau Mativa and Vaiomatalematu “Maddy” Ila Unutoa.
The reigning Miss American Samoa is Skyline Nua.
MASI President Simeafou Imo told Samoa News, a week of activities for the contestants will kick off with a float on Oct. 13. On the night of the same day, a “Meet the Contestants” dinner will be held at the Night Hawk Club in Ili’ili.
Mrs.Imo said this year is special given that it marks the 20th year since MASI was established, and also this year, American Samoa will host the Miss South Pacific Pageant.
“I would like to thank all the beautiful girls who took up this challenging yet fun journey to be a part of this year’s pageant, also thanks to their parents for their support and especially the sponsors — without them, these important events would not be possible” she said.
This year's pageant theme is “Embrace the Past, Inspire the Future”.
The five contestants are:
MISS I’AVAI CREATIONS
Sponsored by The I’avai Creations in Malaeloa, Arielle La’asaga Tuilefano Falealili Maloata, 21years old, is an Army reservist from Malaeloa, and currently attends __ASCC as a business major.
Arielle entered this competition following a request from her grandfather to compete and also to be a voice for the other young girls who think they cannot run in this pageant, because they are athletes. But if any girl can get up on the stage, we can do it too, she said.
Arielle told Samoa News that this is out of her comfort zone and it’s something brand new to her.
She is the daughter of Faleupolu Maloata and Theresa Falealili.
MISS SOLAR ENVIRONMENTAL
Casuallen Iulieta Fale, 24 years old, from Tafuna is a member of the youth, choir and Sunday school with the CCCAS in Petesa-Uta. She’s a 2010 graduate of Chaminade University with a BA in Science in Environmental Studies and English. Casuallen recently graduated from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville with a Masters in Science Environmental Management, and is currently an EPA Safe Drinking Water Environmental Specialist. She is sponsored by Solar Environmental, a private business owned by the Solaita family, which helps clean up environmental disasters, such as oil spills in the territory.
Her decision to compete in the Miss American Samoa Pageant is because she sees a great opportunity for her to promote awareness about environmental issues that impact the islands of American Samoa.
“Truth is, an island nation, American Samoa is more susceptible to the effects of these environmental issues than any other geographical setting. Thus, we must do all that we can to salvage, protect and preserve our island for generations to come.”
Casuallen is the daughter of Tauvela and Fiamalua Fale.
Charity Anna Porotesano, 22 years old, from Fagatogo is currently a Level 6 Social Studies Teacher at Matafao Elementary School. She’s a 2008 graduate of Tafuna High School and holds a Grinnell College Bachelor of Arts in political science in May 2012. Her sponsor is 93KHJ.
Charity said Miss American Samoa is a position of influence and importance because she represents our territory to other cultures.
She said that competing in the pageant was not a dream for her until her senior year in college, where she “realized that with so many young people all over the world striving to make a difference in their countries.”
“I too can make a difference as an empowered Samoan woman in my own home of American Samoa.” she stated.
Charity said it was her mother that inspired her to compete for the Miss American Samoa title. “My mother is what a Miss American Samoa should be in my mind: passionate, hard-working, and caring… It is her energy, passion, and work ethic that I have inherited.”
Charity is the daughter of Solofua Porotesano and Ruah Porotesano Talanoa.
Josephine Maimau Mativa, 21 years old, from Fagatogo is a graduate of Samoana High School and is now working as a timekeeper with the Finance Department at Star Kist. She is sponsored by her employer, StarKist Samoa.
Josephine told Samoa News that she’s running in this year’s pageant as a chance to represent American Samoa and its people through this great opportunity for the young ladies of American Samoa.
She was recently crowned Miss Fiafia of the Fiafia Dance Group Pageant, which was coordinated by her employer StarKist a few months back.
“At first I was nervous but now I am here and it’s actually quite exciting. Of course I am willing to do my best.”
Josephine is the daughter of Asolemativa and Talatalaga Mativa.
As the youngest contestant in this year’s Miss American Samoa Pageant, she’s 18 years old, Vaiomatalematu “Maddy” Ila Unutoa is looking forward to the upcoming pageant.
She’s from Aua and is currently residing in Nu’uuli. Maddy is the founder and administrator of FamSS (Families Student Support) Group based in Nu’uuli.
She’s a graduate of Samoana High School and is currently a student at ASCC taking correspondence economic development courses over the internet.
Maddy said running for the Miss American Samoa has always been in the talk of her family since she was a young girl and now she’s finally done it.
“Being a contestant in this important event is setting an example for my peers. As the saying goes — opportunity only knocks once — and I’m taking this opportunity to achieve something in my life that I’ve always envisioned.
“Now we are looking at encouraging young ladies in FamSS Group to run in the Miss American Samoa pageants as one of their goals and this is one of the reasons I’m running, I want to lead our group by example.”
Maddy said she was inspired to compete in the pageant by her Unutoa family in Aua, and also by former Miss American Samoas who are serving our government — like Miss Leilua Stevenson, and Miss Verona Parker in Apia.
Maddy is the daughter of Rev. Samuel Fiu Unutoa from Aua and Malaeloa, and Mareta Purcell-Unutoa from Leone and Aleipata.