The South Korean contestant--who also took the title of Best in Costume--appeared under the name Mini. She did not disclose her legal name, saying that her family did not know she was participating in the pageant, the Asia News Network story said. But Mini also said that she was dedicating her win trans people who had experienced social rejection.
The pageant welcomes pre-and post-operative transsexuals and transgendered contestants, as well as transvestites, a Nov. 22 CNN International article said, but is restricted to individuals who were born as biological males.
The contest ran for five days, from Nov. 14-19, and included competition in various categories, including Congeniality, Evening Gown, Swimsuit, and Perfect Skin.
[Video is of the 2009 Miss International Queen Swimsuit Contest.]
Text at the Miss International Queen website said that the event "[strives] to advance and support today’s transgender/transsexual," and "offers great opportunities for transgender/transsexual from all over the world to present their individual beauty and intelligence in a friendly atmosphere."
The pageant was sponsored by Tiffany’s Show, a Pattaya cabaret show with its roots in a 1974 single-performer act. The spectacle has grown since then into a production that showcases "[t]he incredible, talents of the transvestite, transgender community, all drawn from the provinces of Thailand" who present "exotic spectacular scenes playing 3 shows nightly every night of the year," according to the Tiffany’s Show website.
The American contestant, Stasha Sanchez, was the event’s second runner-up; Japan’s Aini Takeuchi took first runner-up.