Holland’s Top Model, the Dutch version of the popular television franchise, has crowned a transgender model for the first time in the competition’s history. Loiza Lamers, a 20-year old hairdresser, announced on the show — once she had made it to the final thirteen candidates — that she had undergone sex reassignment surgery. She decided not to mention it before, because she didn’t want it to affect her progress in the competition, but said she received overwhelmingly positive responses once she went public with her story. “I’m really at a point where I can say I am very proud to be transgender,” Lamers told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf. “For me [being on Holland’s Next Top Model] is a reward for my transition. While she’s the first to win, she’s not the first transgender model to participate in the series: Isis King, appeared on the American show back in 2008, and came back to the competition in 2011 for America’s Next Top Model: All Stars.
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