Beauty pageants have been a long-standing tradition in Texas, but recently, there has been some controversy surrounding them in Harris County. Reports from the Miss Irving de Martin organization have indicated that the organization showed favoritism towards one particular contestant, R'Bonney. In response, the event's director, Stewart, declared that this would mark the beginning of a new era for beauty pageants, one that would make them relevant again. The new era of beauty pageants is focused on celebrating a “fashionable girl” from the Facebook era instead of a beautiful, plasticine woman who says nothing controversial.
This is evident in the fact that Miss Irving de Martin is one of the few regional pageants in Texas that is active on Twitter. After two years of preparation, Gabriel won the most coveted competition crown in the world. Hunter Daniel, co-executive director of the Miss Dallas beauty pageant, has also tried to modernize things with a platform that focuses on raising awareness about HIV and AIDS. In a letter posted on the contest's website, Stewart told his fans that he wanted the contests to be relevant again after years of low audience and interest.
At 26, he is the youngest event director in the state and, until recently, the youngest in the country. The day of the contest begins with an interview section held in a conference room at half past nine in the morning.