Karla Paula Henry, age: 22, height: 5’ 6 ½,” weight: 110 lbs., Place of Birth: Cebu City, took home the Swarovski crystal-encrusted crown in the eighth edition of the Miss Earth international contest who became the first Filipino and Asian woman to win in the Philippine-based pageant. Miss Earth 2008 was held last November 9, 2008 (Sunday) at Clark Expo Amphitheater in Angeles City, Pampanga, north of Manila Philippines. She got the title from 2007 Miss Earth winner, Jessica Trisko from Canada.
Miss Philippines Karla Paula Henry beat 84 other international delegates. She was also proclaimed Miss Photogenic based on votes cast by photographers and media scribes in an earlier program. She took home the $20,000-prize from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR), a round-trip business class trip to any United States destination via Korean Air and other prizes.
Miriam Odemba of Tanzania placed second and was proclaimed Miss Earth-Air. Brazil’s Tatiane Alvez was Miss Earth-Water (third place) while Best in Swimsuit winner Abigail Elizalde of Mexico was Miss Earth-Fire (fourth place). They each received $2,000 also from PAGCOR.
Henry will push the pageant’s advocacy of environmental protection to other parts of the world as Miss Earth 2008 winner.
The top four delegates were asked what environmental issue they would discuss with Barack Obama if given the opportunity to meet the US president-elect during the question-and-answer round.
Miss Philippines Karla Paula Henry said she would encourage Obama to incorporate environmental education in the school curriculum in the US. She added other countries, including the Philippines, must do the same to ensure that the youth will have sufficient knowledge in caring for Mother Earth. Her response was punctuated by a thundering applause from the audience.
Her victory last Sunday is also a personal justification for Henry, who last March was shut out of the Binibining Pilipinas semifinals. The pageant selects the country’s representatives to the Miss Universe, Miss World, and Miss International beauty pageants.
She later joined the rival pageant Miss Philippines-Earth in May and handily won the title as one of the heavy favorites, along with fellow Binibini castoff Kristel Lazaro who placed third.
Awards received by Miss Earth 2008 contestants:
Miss Earth 2008 - Karla Paula Henry (Philippines)
Miss Earth 2008 Air (1st runner-up) - Miriam Odemba (Tanzania)
Miss Earth 2008 Water (2nd runner-up) - Tatiane Alves (Brazil)
Miss Earth 2008 Fire (3rd runner-up) - Abigail Elizalde (Mexico)
Miss Earth 2008 Top 8 Finalists:
Mariana Rodríguez (Colombia)
Adriana Reverón (Spain)
Nasanin Nuri (Switzerland)
Daniela Torrealba (Venezuela)
Miss Earth 2008 Top 16 Semifinalists:
Hana Svobodová (Czech Republic)
Seo Seol-hee (Korea)
Uko Ezinne (Nigeria)
Karolina Filipkowska (Poland)
Ruxandra Popa (Romania)
Anna Mezentseva (Russia)
Piyaporn Deejing (Thailand)
Jana Murrell (USA)
Miss Earth 2008 Special Awards:
Miss Photogenic - Miss Philippines (Karla Paula Henry)
Best in National Costume - Miss Panama
Best in Swimsuit - Miss Mexico (Abigail Elizalde)
Miss Talent - Miss Australia
Best in Long Gown - Miss Venezuela (Daniela Torrealba)
Miss Friendship - Miss Ecuador