Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Commending SURVIVOR on the Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas Healthy Media Images Panel

  • April Ancira, Vice President, Ancira I-10 Auto Complex 
  • Lisa Dollinger, Chief Communications Officer, Clear Channel Communications
  • Veronica Esparza, President & CEO, Absolutely Delicious Catering 
  • Fernando A. Guerra, M.D., M.P..H., Public Health Consultant Limited Space
  • Marie Ferdinand-Harris, WNBA All-star, Phoenix Mercury
  • Mileka Lincoln, Anchor/Reporter, KABB-TV  
  • Susan Mengden, Ph.D., Director, Eating Disorder Center
    at San Antonio 
  • The Honorable Laura Parker, Judge, 386th District Court
  • Ursula Pari, Anchor, KSAT 12 
  • Elsa Ramon, Co-anchor, WOAI  
  • Rita Verreos, Survivor: Fiji contestant, TV spokesperson  
  • Claudia Zapata, Registered Dietitian and Columnist,
    San Antonio Express-News
  • with Special Guest Nelson W. Wolff, Bexar County Judge
 I was so honored to have gotten invited, by my friend, Brad Mayhar and also by a mutual friend of my children's peditarician, Dr. Melanie Mitchell, to be one of the Panelists on this Discussion. A topic that I have lived 1st hand, since participating in the Miss Venezuela pageant in 1988. The Miss Venezuela pageant is INFAMOUS for the arduous training and expectations they place on us contestants.  I lived it..if you'll pardon the pun, I "Survived" it.  It was so tough being so young, 18 years old., and being forced to diet..even though I didn't need to (I was a professional ballerina for 10 years so I was in shape) but that's just how the Miss Venezuela pageant operates.  That ended up screwing up my metabolism and started messing with my body image:(  For years I then went on to continue to put those unrealistic pressures on myself , starving myself of essential fats by following non-fat diets, exaggerated exercise routines, all the while truly believing I was doing what was right because that's what the Media showed and highlighted.  I now, thank God, that I put my body through that non sense when I was so young. We're so much more resilient when we're young. It took my getting pregnant to bring me back to the original healthy body image that my parents had instilled in me.  So, a whole 10years of that mess!!  April Ancira shared a similar story on her panel that morning, bravely sharing that she fell prey to anorexia and bulimia..I wasn't far behind.  This is why now I'm ADAMANTLY against "thinness"  being highlighted as something good. This is why I now Coach the girls for the Miss California USA pageant, among others, to share my story and help them have HEALTHY body images. This is why I was THRILLED to speak on this panel. I commend the Girl Scouts for putting something like this together and felt so honored to be included among such distinguished women that morning. I was asked to specifically talk about what tv can do to help give Healthy Images for Girls.  Here's what I had to say:

Getting inducted into the "Girl Scouts" (never 2 late!)Receiving my medal from the CEO of the Girl Scouts of  Southwest Texas, Mrs. Ana Maria Chavez (currently featured in a wonderful cover article in San Antonio Magazine)

with my fellow Panel-to my right, Claudia Zapata-Elliot

With Brad Mayhar, one of the organizers of this event and Mileka Lincoln, weekend news anchor on Fox
An impromptu video that the Chair asked me to do at the completion of the event.

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