(The Hague) Rikkie Kollé has won the title of Miss Netherlands, a first in the country for a transgender woman who said she wants to be “a voice and a role model” for others.

The 22-year-old from the city of Breda was crowned on Saturday and will now compete for the Miss Universe title in El Salvador, organizers said.

“I DID IT,” she posted on Instagram after her win. “Yes, I’m trans and I want to share my story, but I’m also Rikkie, and that’s what matters to me.”

She becomes the second trans candidate for the Miss Universe pageant, after Angela Ponce, Miss Spain in 2018.

According to the organizers of Miss Netherlands, “this is the first time in the history of the country that a trans woman has won this competition”.

Rikkie Kollé has “radiated throughout the competition”, and has “a strong story with a clear mission”, they added on their website.

The new Miss said she wanted to use her victory to bring “change to society”.

“As Miss Netherlands 2023, I want to be a voice and role model for all young women and queer people,” she said in a statement posted on the pageant’s website.

“I know better than anyone what it’s like to feel alone, and not be surrounded by only positive thoughts.”

“When I was a little Rik and I came out as trans, it was not easy for anyone […]. Today, I am stronger than ever.”

The last Dutch woman to win the Miss Universe competition was Angela Visser in 1989.