The first black Miss Universe, Janelle Penny Commissiong, says she doesn't think the title will change her life.
"I don't think I'll be getting the eight hours' sleep I'm used to . But I don't see how I'll change just because I was selected Miss Universe," the 24-year-old United States-educated fashion designer told reporters.
Commissiong, from the twin Caribbean island nation of Trinidad-Tobago, broke a 25-year-old color barrier when she was crowned Miss Universe 1977 here Saturday night before a worldwide television audience of hundreds of millions.
She called her vistory "a step in the right direction" toward changing rarial attitudes, but she added, "It would take more than a pageants."
Many of the 16 black contestants had complained during the two-week pageant preliminaires that they were ignored by photographers who concentrated on white competitors.
Along with the crown, Commissiong, who goes by the name of Penny at home, won prizes that included $23,000 in cash, a $3,500 beauty scholarship, a car and a $15,000 movie contract.
Commissiong, who describes herself as "as old-fashioned girl," was schedued to fly to New York today and to hold a news conference there Thursday . But she told a reporter she wants to go home "as soon as I can."
Miss Universe 1977 was selected by a panel of 12 judges from a field of 80 contestants.
The runners-up were, in order: Miss Austria, Eva Duringer; Miss Scotland, Sandra Bell; Miss Germany, Marie-Luise Gassen, Miss USA, Kimberly Tomes of Houston, was one of 12 semifinalists.
Commissiong said she hoped her victory would give "other girls from the Third World more of an incentive to get into the contest."
A fashion buyer whose ambition is to own a chain of boutiques, Commissiong likes the idea of "equal pay for equal work" but has reservations about some aspects of women's liberation.
"I like men to hold open doors for me and all those old-fashioned things that you don't find much any more. And I like dresses over pants because I like people looking at my legs."
Born of a Trinidadian father and a Venezuelan mother, she said her name, pronounced CO-MISS-SEE-YOUNG, is Portuguese. She said she had a "gut feeling all the way down" she might win the coveted title.
She said she has a boyfriend in Trinidad but "marriage will have to wait a while for me."
She is graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, where she lived for 10 years.
Black singer Dionne Warwick, one of the judges, broke into tears when Miss Trinidad-Tobago's name was announced as the winner and said later "I felt as if I had won."
The only other black judge, photographer Gordon Parks, said. "She has the classical beauty of black women around the world."