My Night in Nine: Siera Bearchell, Miss Universe Canada

Posted by Drake, June 29, 2017

As 365 days as Miss Universe Canada winds down, Saskatchewan native and law student Siera Bearchell chose to celebrate the extension of her reign with a night of R+R at The Drake Hotel. With an inspiring journey that starts with her Aboriginal ancestry, Siera is proud to be Métis. She's an avid reader, yogi, runner and latte aficionado who didn't let critics get to her when she was body-shamed.

"I was called "fat," "overweight," and told I was "promoting obesity." I used the platform of Miss Universe to encourage women to love the skin they're in and not fall into the societal pressure we put on women to look a certain way."

While Siera made herself at home at The Drake Hotel, we took the opportunity to get to know Miss Universe Canada a little bit better.

Siera hair

What was your path to becoming Miss Canada?
My family and I lost our home to a house fire in 2009 and we were helped immensely by the Red Cross. I wanted to help families like ours so I began volunteering with the Red Cross. I then entered my first "pageant" in hopes to make a difference on a greater scale. I entered Miss Teen Saskatchewan just weeks after the house fire and I won! I went on to win Miss Teen Canada-World and had the opportunity to travel to Kenya, Africa to build a school with Free The Children and speak in front of 16,000 people at WE Day. I found opportunities in pageants and made a goal to one day represent CANADA at Miss Universe!

What was it like to represent the country as Miss Canada?
Representing Canada and standing on the Miss Universe Stage in the Philippines in front of nearly 1 billion around the world amongst 86 countries was one of my most proud moments ever. I was so proud to wear that Canada sash and represent something so much greater than myself. The experience reminded me that anything is possible with a strong work ethic, determination and optimism.
When I competed for Miss Canada last year, I had just run my first marathon. While I was competing I was called "fat," "overweight," "lazy," and "un-prepared," by pageant critics and fellow contestants. I overcame the shamers and won the title. The criticisms escalated at Miss Universe and I was told I would never place at Miss Universe, let alone win because I was "obese" and "promoting obesity." Keep in mind I am 5'8'' and 135lbs. I ended up placing in the Top 9 amongst 86 countries from around the world and I broke Canada's 10 year streak of not placing at Miss Universe! I have now been able to use the platform and title to speak to young women, schools, girl's groups and so on.

Siera 2

What is it like to be a role model for both young men and women?
I have never thought of myself as a role model which makes this an interesting question for me. I have been called a "role model" and "inspiration" and I think that is super awesome because it makes me feel as though I am doing something that matters. I want to be able to contribute to the world and aspire to be a role model for those who struggle to find someone to look up to. The fact that you are calling me a role model is an honour! So thank you.

You have a huge social following, what kind of pressure does that put on you with an audience of that size?
I don't like to put a lot of emphasis on social media and I don't allow myself to feel pressure from it. My following grew around around 10,000 to over 100,000 on my combined social media during the Miss Universe competition. While this growth in followers was exponential, I did not allow that to impact the content of my posts nor did it change my view of social media or how I use it. There is certainly a lot of emphasis and pressure to use social media in a particular way, but I simply view it as a way to share my thoughts, what I am up to and a means to inspire others!

What’s next for you, post-reign?
I won the title of Miss Universe Canada in June 2016 and I pass my title in October! I will "hold" the title about 4 months longer than usual. Despite this, I will be returning to law school in September to complete my final year of studies before graduating with my Juris Doctor degree in April!

Siera cocktails
Siera Sushi
Siera 3
Siera Cheeto
Siera 1
Siera luggage

Early morning departure face. We've all been there. Keep up with Siera on Instagram at @sierabearchell!

Posted in: Hotel + Travel

Tags: my night in nine  siera bearchell  the drake hotel