Diamonds are a girl’s best friend, so they say. But maybe for Joy-Ann Biscette you can add beauty pageants as well, to that short list. And, for the 25-year-old St Lucian beauty, employed with Harry Edward Jewelers, dealers in diamonds and other precious stones, earning the right to represent St Lucia at the Miss Universe pageant in September is another crowning moment or more like obtaining her doctorate in pageantry, as she puts it.
The STAR spoke with Joy-Ann on Tuesday, three days after she walked away with the title of Miss Saint Lucia/Universe. The local pageant was held here on Saturday, June 11 at the Sandals Grande. Joy-Ann and the other contestants competed in the areas of the introduction segment, swimwear, interview and evening wear.
We first asked a question she said she’d been asked many times before; “What enticed you to do another pageant, having done quite a few before?” Joy-Ann responded: “It is something I have been asked many times before. However I see pageantry as an outlet to meet people, make new friends both at home and abroad and just be me, give off my best, expose my talent, my personality, just who I am.”
“And just who is Joy-Ann Biscette?” I then asked. “Someone who is confident, bubbly, charismatic, friendly, outgoing, warm. Yes, these words describe who I am,” she says a burst of sincerity and positive energy coming through.
For Joy-Ann Biscette, relaxing, socializing, zip lining and spending time with friends and family, are her ideal forms of enjoyment and entertainment. But, she does have a social conscience and sees participating in Red Cross activities as a member, as one of giving back to society.
Her first major pageant was the 2005 National Carnival Queen pageant, which she won. Joy-Ann then went on to represent the island in St Vincent at Miss Carival in 2006, Miss London Elite in 2007, Miss World in 2008 and Miss Jamzone in Guyana in 2010 where she was the 1st runner up. She has also done several fashion and modeling engagements and was the face on the popular Piton calendar back in 2007.
A former student of the Sir Arthur Lewis community college with an Associates Degree in Business management, Joy-Ann likens the stages of pageantry to various education levels. The National Carnival Queen pageant she explains was like my degree, the Miss world the Masters and now Miss Universe the Doctorate.
“I am really looking forward to this pageant and once again making new friends from all over the world. But I will also be proudly representing my country as an ambassador and will give it my best to afford St Lucia good representation at this event,” Joy-Ann told the STAR. She will also be reuniting with at least two friends from the Miss World pageant Miss Great Britain and Miss Trinidad, both of whom will also be representing their countries and the Miss Universe pageant.
In preparation for the pageant Joy-Ann says she has started a strict diet and exercise regiment and will be working on her public speaking as well. “We are also working on finding an international pageant coach,” she informed the STAR.
The franchise holder, Joan Johnson meanwhile is busy securing much needed sponsorship for St Lucia’s participation in the Miss Universe pageant and Joy-Ann is appealing to all those who can, to support the venture.
“In the end my participation and success will depend on the support we get, but my participation and success can also be beneficial to not just myself but the island as a tourism product as I will be an ambassador for my country,” she states.
Joy-Ann is expected to leave the Island in August, at least three weeks ahead of the 2011 Miss Universe pageant, which takes place in Brazil on September 12.