Meet Miriam Odemba, a former beauty queen, who revolutionised modelling in Tanzania by becoming the first of her compatriots to win an Elite Model contract in 1999. Her road to success started in 1997 when she competed in a local beauty pageant, ‘Miss Temeke’. She went on to compete in ‘Miss Tanzania’, finishing in the top 10. The breathtaking African beauty then tried her luck in several beauty pageants, including ‘Miss East Africa’ in 1998, and at the end of that year took part in an African regional model search – ‘Mnet Face of Africa’ and made the top three.
Some 10 years later, in 2008, Miriam decided to return to her passion of modelling and beauty pageantry and under the management of Maria Sarungi Tsehai, she relaunched her career by taking part in ‘Miss Earth’, one of the top four beauty pageants in the world. She was the first runner-up of the competition and won the crown of ‘Miss Earth Water’ – a first major title for any Tanzanian in a major beauty pageant. With her reputation cemented, Miriam has gone on to be a great environment ambassador for her country. She is now based in Paris, working as a freelance model and is a mother of one daughter.
PHOTOGRAPHER/FASHION STYLIST ELENA IV-SKAYA
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