Yolanda Makle, a Maryland resident, won the coveted Ms. Galaxy International 2011 competition on July 10 at the Power Center Theater in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Makle won four of the five competition categories: interview, swimsuit, fashion wear and photogenic ability. As Ms. Galaxy International, she will spend the next year traveling and promoting her platform, “Empowerment for Young Women and Girls.”

In addition to competing in pageants, Makle has been a pageant and life coach on MTV’s Emmy- winning series “MADE” and is the founder of the Ethnic World Pageant System, which promotes cultural diversity. She has also participated in national advertising campaigns with Remy Martin, J. Crew, and Macy’s.

Makle is an alumna of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and currently works as a telecommunications project manager and a commercial-print model. The mother of two also volunteers as a youth cheerleading coach and assists victims of domestic violence and youth illiteracy.

In 2006 and 2007, the professional model was awarded the President’s Volunteer Service Award for her work in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.

The Galaxy International Pageant®, Inc. System was founded in 2002. Currently based in Troy, Mich., the pageant is owned and operated by Maria Torres. The system is dedicated to its mission of emphasizing beauty, style, and cultural appreciation of women from around the globe.