Taking beauty to the global stage: Keralite Meera aims for Miss America title

Meera is currently preparing for the renowned Miss America pageant. Photo: Special arrangement

Beauty looks to be an idea on which the world converges. As the Miss World competition is happening in India, a Keralite, Meera Thankam Mathew, is striving for the dream title of Miss America. She had previously won the prestigious Miss India New York crown in 2022, making her noted within the Indian community in the US. Meera hails from Kaipattoor in Pathanamthitta and currently resides in Staten Island, New York. She is the daughter of John Mathew and Raji.

John Mathew works with the Traffic Division of the New York Police. Meera’s younger sister Tara Mathew is a school student. Meera Mathew was born in Kaipattoor and moved to the US at the age of three. Following her Miss New York win, Meera participated in the Miss India Worldwide competition, a prestigious event for people of Indian descent living outside India, and came in the top-five.

Meera is currently preparing for the renowned Miss America pageant. The first round of this year’s competition is scheduled for the end of the year. If she wins, she would be the second Indian to win the title after  Nina Davuluri (2014). Meera is already the winner of the Miss Staten Island title, becoming the first South Asian to achieve this honour since 1939.

Despite the demanding job schedule and strict routines, Meera finds time to engage in her hobbies, which include modelling, participating in beauty contests, and dancing. Her preparation for the Miss India New York beauty contest was mostly by herself. A significant part of her preparation involved watching numerous videos related to beauty contests to gain insights and knowledge.

Meera diligently watched videos from various beauty pageants like Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss India USA, and Miss India New York, following the footsteps of renowned beauty queens like Aishwarya Rai and Sushmita Sen, whose foray into global beauty platforms began in 1994. By familiarising herself with the goings on, Meera absorbed lessons and insights from the experiences of past winners and understood the nuances. She adapted those learnings to her preparation strategy.

Renuka Joseph is the only Keralite to win the Miss India New York competition, in 2018. A Malayali had also won the Miss India USA title — Stacy Isaac — who represented the state of Florida in 2001. Meera aspired to be a police officer since her childhood and she pursued this dream after high school.

She realised that the IT field could offer her more time to pursue her dreams and decided to transition into this sector. Nevertheless, she joined the American Malayali Law Enforcement United, an association of Malayalee members in various law-enforcement agencies in the US.

Acting in Indian cinema, especially in South Indian productions, is one of Meera’s major aspirations. Meera, who adores Malayalam cinema and is particularly fond of the comedy genre. She is a fan of movies like ‘Punjabi House,’ ‘Drishyam,’ and ‘Kurukshetra.’ Also, Meera has a dream of modelling in Kerala.

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