'Call me and say Helloooo Universe!': Miss Universe owner Anne Jakrajutatip gives Esther Swan a send-off in Manila

Earl D.C. Bracamonte - Philstar.com
'Call me and say Helloooo Universe!': Miss Universe owner Anne Jakrajutatip gives Esther Swan a send-off in Manila
Miss Universe Talent and Creatives Director Esther Swan (left) with Miss Universe Organization President Paula Shugart (center). Miss Universe owner Anne Jakrajutatip of JKN Global (right) at the red carpet of Miss Universe Philippines Fashion and Charity Gala Night 2023 in Okada Manila
Philstar.com / Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo

MANILA, Philippines — Miss Universe owner Anne Jakrajutatip of JKN Global blew a kiss as a send-off to Miss Universe Talent and Creatives Director Esther Swan at last night's Miss Universe Philippines 2023 Fashion and Charity Gala in Okada Manila, Pasay City.

In her speech last night, Anne thanked Miss Universe Organization President Paula Shugart, who told her that she will be staying on with the new Miss Universe management. Shugart has been with MUO for over 25 years.

Later in her speech, Anne sent a flying kiss to Esther, who took care of the Philippines' Pia Wurtzbach and Catriona Gray during their reign as Miss Universe.

"This month is her final month with Miss Universe also, and I would like to thank you so much. Because of your service, we've groomed a lot of beautiful women, a lot of Miss Universe from all colors," Anne told Esther. 

“So I just would like you to give a round of applause to Esther right here! Thank you, thank you! I will miss you dearly but you will continue to be a great adviser. We really learned a lot from you."

She encouraged Esther to call her when she gets home and say, “Hellooo, Universe!”

Swan is rumored to have given her resignation to the organization last month. This she did, the rumor mill went on, when she learned that the new owners were slowly easing out "legacy" employees from the staff's roster.

In a cryptic message on her social media account, she is seen dropping a mic - as if hinting on leaving something with a bang! Pageant aficionados worldwide are saddened by this piece of information. Fans are of the belief that, indeed, Esther will bid the MUO adieu when the time comes.

Esther endeared herself to Filipino pageant fans during Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach's reign. And solidified her affinity with the pageant community with Catriona Gray's win in 2018, as well as with the other crowned queens during the IMG era.

During her many visits to the Philippines, the amiable talent manager was known to have a liking for Jollibee's peach mango pie. Her last visit to the country was last summer when she accompanied Miss Universe 2021 Haarnaz Sandhu during the latter's stint as guest of the 2022 Miss Universe Philippines coronation night.

But the rumors were proven to be true. Esther will be ending her office as Miss Universe Organization's director of talent development by the end of May, making Manila and Miss Universe Philippines among her last stops with MUO.

In an issued statement, MUO wrote, "It's true: the MUO is sad to announce longtime collaborator and Director of Talent Development Esther Swan will be leaving the company at the end of May.

"Esther has been integral to our development over the past 22 years, and we wish her luck in her new adventures. Please join us and the many women whose lives and careers she has shaped in celebrating her amazing run over the next few months. Esther, we can't wait to see what's next for you."

Esther's tour of duty began in 2001 with Denise Quiñones of Puerto Rico, down the line to current titleholder R'bonney Gabriel of Texas, USA. — With reports from Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo

RELATED: 'Give me the crown': Miss Universe owner Anne Jakrajutatip apologizes to Catriona Gray

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