In the spotlight: Miss Teen Cayman Leanne Ritch

For 17-year-old Leanne Ritch, all
the hard work has been worth it. The newly-crowned Miss Teen is now looking
forward to a busy and eventful year as the title holder and arguably the most
high-profile teen on Cayman.

The youngest child of Lonnie and
Aileen Ritch, Leanne – also known as – Lily to friends – is keen to start her
yearlong reign by reaching out to local youth. Still adjusting to her new role,
Miss Teen 2010 spoke about her special night and her hopes and dreams for the

Q: How did you hear about the
pageant and what made you decide to enter?

A: I heard about the pageant
through my friends. They knew I had the potential to enter and compete and do
my very best. Apart from dreaming about the crown, it was something I always
wanted to do when I was a little girl and seeing other young ladies enter got
me to take that step forward and compete.

Q: What were the most daunting and
rewarding aspects of being a Miss Teen participant?

A: Meeting the other participants
was the most daunting aspect because I did not know them and I did not know
what to expect from them. As time proceeded, we became closer and eventually,
we became great friends. We helped each other through difficult times and gave
support to each other.

The most rewarding aspect was
making it through practices and having the courage to make everyone proud and
achieving my dream.

Q: Which other contestants were you
particularly close with?

A: I was friends with all of the
contestants. We all spent great times together and helped each other in every
way. I was particularly close with Gabriela Jackson. She has a great sense of
humour, an awesome personality and she was one of the encouraging factors that
kept me going. Thank you Gabbi for being there for me.

Q: What was your favourite part of
the pageant night?

A: My favourite part was definitely
the opening dance. I had a lot of fun and energy to spare!

Q: What does winning the
competition mean to you?

A: For me, winning the competition
means being a representative of the three islands I love dearly and being a
role model for my peers.

Q: How do you hope to advance your

A: My platform is Domestic Abuse. My
goal is to promote my platform through the media such as radio, local newspaper
outlets and the schools. The pageant is not only about the great experience,
you have to put in hard work, determination and effort. Believe that you can
achieve anything.

Q: How would you describe yourself
in terms of your personality?

A: I am a hard-working, optimistic,
outgoing and respectful person. I have a lot of confidence in myself and I
believe that I can do almost anything. I enjoy making people laugh, making new friends
and learning new things. I am easy to get along with, especially if I know you
have a strawberry cake!

Q: You’ve recently finished at John
Gray High School. What do you plan to do now?

A: I plan to attend UCCI for my
Associate’s in Accounting and then attend a university in England for my
Bachelor’s in Accounting. I want to be an accountant because mathematics is my
favourite subject and I love numbers. Miss Teen will help me to pursue my
career because I was given a government scholarship.

Q: What kind of books do you most
enjoy reading?

A: I enjoy reading all kinds of
books, but I mostly read Archie ones because they make me laugh and they are
fun to read.

Q: What’s your favourite TV show,
movie and local band?

A: I do not have a favourite TV show,
but I do enjoy cartoons and sci-fi. My favourite movie is A Walk To Remember.
It is a very touching and powerful film. My favourite local band is The iZ
because I love their music and it is something I can listen to and not hear
inappropriate lyrics.

Q: Tell Weekender readers something
unusual that they do not already know about you.

A: For a slim person [94Ibs], I eat
a lot.