Marbella Hinojosa, correspondant
USA.- Halima Aden, 19 years old form St. Cloud Minnesota made the top 15 contestants in the 2016 Miss Minnesota USA Pageant.
Aden, who was born in Kenya but moved to Minnesota as a child, wore a traditional hijab on her head and competed in the swimsuit competition while fully covered in a burkini, keeping her conservative Muslim faith. She is the first competitor to wear that attire in the history of the pageant.
“A lot of people will look at you and will fail to see your beauty because you are covered up and they are not used to it, so growing up I just had to work on my people skills and give people a chance to really know me besides the clothing.”
Pageant officials say they fully supported Aden´s choice to remain covered.
Denise Wallace, executive co-director of the Miss Minnesota USA pageant said “I think for Halima standing on the stage this weekend she is showing other women that they too can do that and that it is possible for them.”
She is hoping for more Muslim women wearing burkinis and being celebrated. Aden said that she was very surprised to be named to the top 15 and has received many massages of support from women around the world.
She didn’t make it to the top 5, but what the heck…making history is something to be proud of.