Ornella Mariam Jayasiri Gunesekere, is a 26 year old currently learning languages and holds a diploma in Tourism and Hospitality Management. She works as a Director of an exclusive Party Wear store in Colombo.As someone who both faced paralysis and overcame it, she has learned how to use adversity positively and encourage others to dream beyond their circumstances. Ornella lives by the quote "In order to get to the rainbow you've got to be willing to put up with the rain" and believes true beauty is being able to live out your dream. To her, the greatest joy is seeing others achieve their full potential.
On December 17th, 2018 my dream turned into a reality, becoming the 67th Miss Universe and the fourth woman from the Philippines to earn the crown. More than a victory for myself, it was a victory for my entire country. It will always be one of my greatest honors to have represented my country with pride, and to carry the Philippines sash across my heart.On December 17th, 2018 my dream turned into a reality, becoming the 67th Miss Universe and the fourth woman from the Philippines to earn the crown. More than a victory for myself, it was a victory for my entire country. It will always be one of my greatest honors to have represented my country with pride, and to carry the Philippines sash across my heart.Although the title of Miss Universe may be the end destination for some, I feel that I have embarked on a new journey.Every step of this new path is taken with gratitude in my heart. I plan to utilize this amazing platform and plethora of opportunities to learn and grow professionally and personally.
There are so many goals that I have set out to achieve this year, including continuing advocating for quality education of children in underserved areas and HIV/AIDS prevention.To the incredible women competing, congratulations! Throughout your individual journeys I ask you to remember the reason why you embarked on this road in the first place. Always bring yourself back to your purpose.. Let it anchor you. Participating in a pageant is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and though this experience, we grow and discover new facets of ourselves.It is this personal growth that makes every woman a winner. I wish you the best of luck, love and light and do not forget to enjoy yourself!
The Miss Universe Organization (MUO) works internationally to showcase the world’s most glamorous, poised and inspiring women to provide them with an opportunity to serve as spokeswomen for various cause alliances. Millions of viewers from all around the world tune in each year to find out who will win the coveted crown and receive the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to serve as an icon for women across the globe. During her reign, Miss Universe is given every opportunity for personal and professional enrichment through work with the organization’s valued professionals, who help to cultivate personal career goals, humanitarian fellowship and a constructive voice to effect positive change in the world. The Miss Universe Organization continues to set the bar for beauty pageants of its kind, and will continue to spotlight the most accomplished women for generations to come!
Ornella Gunasekara was crowned Miss Universe Sri Lanka 2018 on the 25th of September at the Hilton Colombo Hotel, having bested 10 other candidates to win the title as well as the awards for Model of the Year, Miss Congeniality, Miss Popular and Miss Confidence. Speaking after her coronation, she attributed her success in the pageant to perseverance, hard work, and having the right attitude. Ornella will represent Sri Lanka at Miss Universe 2018, to be held in Bangkok, Thailand in December.