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  • Writer's pictureChristian Malnawa

Baguio’s representative advocates for cordilleran heritage at Miss Universe PH 2024

Baguio City, Philippines – Another contender to watch out for has been sent by Baguio City to the prestigious Miss Universe Philippines pageant this year.


On her journey towards claiming the coveted crown, Justine Tarah Marie Valencia, Miss Baguio Turismo 2023, aims to showcase Baguio’s culture on the MUPH stage, aside from highlighting the city's renowned cold climate and tourist attractions.


“I see Baguio not just for its cool climate and beautiful scenery, but for me, being born and raised in Baguio makes me feel like our culture needs to be uplifted and known throughout the Philippines, and that's what I will wholeheartedly represent on the Miss Universe Philippines stage,” she told the Baguio City Information Office in an interview.


She also intends to utilize the platform to advocate for sustainable and responsible tourism.


Valencia was among the 55 candidates from all over the country, as well as from the Filipino community in the USA, Australia, and the UK, who were officially introduced during the press presentation held at the Hilton Manila on February 18, 2024.


As Baguio's representative for MUPH, Valencia expresses her gratitude to the city government and her supporters.

“Agyaman ak, Baguio! Ipannakkel ko nga anakak ti Baguio. Para kanyayo daytoy nga laban! It takes a village to get to the universe! To the city government of Baguio, headed by Mayor Benjamin Magalong, the Associate Partner of Baguio Atty. Pablo Sanidad II, and my family, agyaman ak! I will carry your hearts on this journey,” she wrote in her Facebook post.


Who is Tarah Valencia?


The 22-year-old beauty queen is a model and a brand ambassador.


She graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Tourism Management, specializing in International Tourism, from the University of Baguio.


In addition to being the Miss Baguio Turismo 2023 titleholder, she also holds the title of Miss HRAB (Hotel and Restaurant Association of Baguio) 2023.


Given the opportunity, after competing alongside fellow hopefuls and previous winners of international pageants, Valencia hopes to succeed incumbent queen Michelle Marquez-Dee and represent the country in the 73rd edition of Miss Universe in Mexico City.


The Miss Charm crown also awaits her, and if the stars align, she will succeed Krishna Gravidez, the current Miss Charm Philippines and Baguio’s representative in the Miss Universe Philippines last year.