In a groundbreaking twist, the crown of “Miss San Francisco” has been claimed by a male winner who will represent the city at the highly anticipated Miss California Pageant in July 2023.
Monroe Lace, a trailblazing transgender male known as the captivating “beauty queen,” emerged victorious in the Miss San Francisco pageant held in March. This historic win marks a significant milestone, as Lace becomes the first transgender male to secure the prestigious title in the pageant’s 99-year history.
Speaking with CBS Bay Area, Lace shared the profound meaning behind the sash he proudly wears, symbolizing the weight of his profession and the responsibility he holds in making a positive impact on the lives of young children.
Immersing himself in the cause, the 25-year-old dedicates almost every day to engaging with elementary schools. Recently, during a reading session with a fourth-grade class at Tenderloin Community School, Lace brought the picture book “Sparkle Boy” to life. This heartwarming tale portrays the story of a young boy yearning to express himself freely, transcending societal gender norms.
Reflecting on his lifelong aspiration, Lace disclosed in an interview with KRON 4 in March that he had been dreaming of this moment since the age of 12, a dream that led him to embark on his own path.
As Lace embarks on his journey to compete for the Miss California crown, he hopes to become only the second transgender male to participate in a national championship, following in the footsteps of Kataluna Enriquez, a man who identifies as a woman and represented Miss Nevada in the Miss USA competition in 2021. Additionally, in November, another male contender vied for the Miss New Hampshire title after securing the title of “Miss Greater Derry.”
Despite facing adversity, including death threats and hurtful comments about his appearance, Miss San Francisco remains resolute in his mission to inspire and uplift children. The knowledge that there are transgender kids who draw strength from his story serves as a powerful motivation for Lace.
CBS interviewed a fourth-grade student who expressed admiration for Lace’s beauty and normalcy, dispelling stereotypes and embracing acceptance.
The inclusion of males in traditionally female-dominated fields has sparked debates and opinions across various spectrums. Prominent figures, such as Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley, have proclaimed it as the defining women’s issue of our time. However, some women athletes, like Paula Scanlon and Riley Gaines, have voiced concerns regarding male participation in women’s sports, notably referencing swimmer Lia Thomas. Even commentator Samantha Ponder breached ESPN policy by expressing her reservations about men competing in women’s sports.
In a recent legal ruling, a federal court upheld the Miss USA organization’s right, protected by the First Amendment’s Free Speech provision, to maintain its requirement for contestants to be “natural born females” as they vie for the esteemed Miss Universe title.
Amidst these ongoing discussions, Monroe Lace stands poised to make history and contribute to the ongoing progress and inclusivity within the pageantry world, inspiring others to embrace their authenticity and break barriers along the way.