25-year-old NASA data analyst, Fionnghuala O’Reilly, was crowned Miss Universe Ireland 2019 on Thursday, August 1 at the Mansion House (Round Room) in Dublin. The runners-up were Shona Tuohy, Ciara Mulligan, Katie O’Donoghue and Sophie Bahl.
Fionnghuala hails from Swords, Dublin and has a bachelor of science degree in systems engineering from The George Washington University. She beat 27 other contestants to make history as the first biracial woman to win the national title and represent the emerald isle at the Miss Universe 2019 pageant.
As a female engineer, the beauty queen recognizes that she is a minority in her profession and has experienced why it is so important for women to break through glass ceilings. She wants to work to empower and support women in their careers so that they can stay competitive and continue to learn the skills necessary to go far.
It was the 3rd edition of Miss Universe Ireland under MOXIE Media Productions headed by American model and former Miss Indiana USA, Brittany Mason. This year’s finalists were the most diverse group of women to have ever competed in the pageant.
Ireland is yet to win the Miss Universe crown. The country’s 2nd runner-up placements in both 1963 and 1983 with Marlene McKeown and Roberta Brown were its highest achievements so far in the international competition.
Photos: Miss Universe Ireland