Congratulations to 24-year-old Liesl Laurie from Eldorado Park in Johannesburg who has been crowned Miss South Africa tonight…living up to her motto that she will “never fit in because I was born to stand out!”

Miss South Africa Liesl Laurie flanked by her princesses Refilwe Mthimunye and Ntsiki Mkhize
Miss South Africa Liesl Laurie flanked by her princesses Refilwe Mthimunye and Ntsiki Mkhize tonight at the crowning ceremony. Photo: FB/MissSA

Liesl was crowned at the ceremony this evening, 29 March, at Sun City Superbowl.  Her first and second princesses are Refilwe Mthimunye and Ntsiki Mkhize, who also both hail from Gauteng.

Judges included TV personality Sophie Ndaba and former Miss World Anneline Kriel (59) who was crowned in 1974. She was united with South Africa’s two other Miss Worlds who made appearances during the show – 74-year-old Penny Rey (Miss World 1958) and current title holder Rolene Strauss.

Three Miss Worlds all in a row: Rolene Strauss (2014), Penny Rey (1958) and Anneline Kriel (1974)
Three Miss Worlds all in a row: Rolene Strauss (2014), Penny Rey (1958) and Anneline Kriel (1974). Photo: FB/MissSA

15 Things You Should Know About Miss South Africa 2015 Liesl Laurie:

Liesl Laurie. Miss South Africa 2015.
Liesl Laurie. Miss South Africa 2015. Photo: MissSA.co.za
  1. She graduated with a B.Com from the University of Johannesburg (Soweto Campus) in April last year.
  2. Back in 2010 she was a Miss Soweto princess.
  3. Her mother Karen, a high-school teacher, has inspired her by overcoming a drug addiction. Liesl told the Miss SA organisers: “She has faced many obstacles throughout her life and watching her go through these obstacles has taught me that it doesn’t matter how far down you fall… you can always get up, dust yourself off and start building again. I salute her!”
  4. Her favourite and most inspirational person in the world is her grandmother, a  67-year-old retired teacher.
  5. After graduating Liesl took the rest of last year off to immerse in modelling and working with various Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs). Intent on giving back to the community, she launched her own NPO in June – The Pearl Project – which motivates young girls with educational workshops.
  6. Tonight is a dream come true. She dreamt of participating in the Miss South Africa pageant since watching it as a little girl and believes “everything I am, every obstacle I have faced, and everything I have achieved, has led me to this point.”
  7. Liesl hopes to use her Miss South Africa status to reach even more young people and motivate them “to rise to the challenge of building a better and brighter future as South Africans.”
  8. Liesl has a younger sister Micheala who is in primary school.
  9. Like most young South Africans she likes hanging out at the mall with her friends, going on road trips, dancing, watching movies, baking and swimming.
  10. She plays a mean game of Rummikub.
  11. It was Charlize Theron and her Outreach Project which inspired Liesl to start The Pearl Project. She hopes to meet the South African actress during her reign.
  12. A tip for potential dates – Liesl likes sushi, prawns…and a cinnamon bun.

1 COMMENT

  1. […] Liesl Laurie from Eldorado Park in Johannesburg was crowned Miss South Africa yesterday, 29 March, at the Sun City Superbowl. I was live tweeting the event. As usual, my Twitter feed was a lot more interesting than the pageant itself. Topics ranged from the value of beauty pageants in general to the racial and aesthetic biases that pageant judges have. I was particularly annoyed by the prospect of another non-black woman winning. Even though I was very proud of Rolene Strauss, who won the Miss World 2014 contest, I must admit that when she was crowned Miss South Africa early last year, I went on a relatively eloquent rant (by Twitter standards anyway) about white women being crowned Miss South Africa post apartheid. Thanks to Timehop, you can relive the entire thing with me. […]

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