AJ with her parents
AJ with her parents

Aileen Jan Valdehuesa Yap is the winner of Miss USA International 2009 after representing the state of Texas in a pageant that was held from 7-10 July 2009 at the Stafford Conference Centre in Houston, Texas.

Yap, who traces her family roots to Cagayan de Oro City in the Philippines will represent the US in the 49th Miss International pageant to be held at the Venetian Macao Resort in Macau, China on November 7, 2009.

Filipino-American A.J., as she is called by close relatives, is the daughter of Filipino immigrants from Cagayan de Oro City in the Philippines. The new beauty queen is now 20 years old.

In the final tally, Ms. Wyoming Keri Shar was chosen fourth runner up; Ms. California Kristy Davis, third runner up; Ms. Michigan Shawna Vale, second runner up and Ms. Florida Lees Darayanne Garcia, first runner up.


The preliminary competitions for the swimsuit and evening gowns were held July 8 at the Hilton Hotel Ballroom in Houston. A.J. won both the “Best in Swimsuit” and “Best in Evening Gown” awards.

The next day the contestants had a private interview with the judges. The five finalists were chosen following the preliminaries but were only disclosed during the pageant night on July 10. Among the six judges were reigning Mrs. America Maureen McDonald and former Miss Universe Chelsi Smith.

During the pageant night on July 10, A.J. was announced as one of the finalists joining Miss California Kristy Dennis, Miss Florida Lees Darayanne Garcia, Miss Michigan Shawna Vale, and Miss Wyoming Keri Shaw.

The five finalists again competed in their swimsuits and evening gowns, and had a question and answer portion with Emcee Alex Trevino. A.J. was asked to describe her recent vacation in the Philippines

A.J. is a junior at the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Texas majoring in biology. Her father Boy is a psychiatrist and Mom Geget is a nurse by profession and Director and Owner of Virginia’s Lakeview Personal Care Home in Texas, USA.

A.J. was selected by National Pageant Director Britt Harrison and other pageant directors from other states of MISS US INTERNATIONAL as Miss Texas US International 2009.

She graduated as the Most Outstanding Student at the Sacred Heart School in Conroe, Texas and went on to graduate Summa cum Laude at Willis High School.

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