|Beauty pageant titleholder|
12 March 1948 |
St. George's, Grenada
|Title(s)||Miss World 1970
Miss Grenada 1970
Miss World Caribbean 1970
Jennifer Hosten (born 12 March 1948) is a Grenadian director, model and beauty queen who won the Miss World 1970 contest, representing Grenada. She became the first woman from her country to win the title. The whole contest had been controversial even before the result had been announced. Afterwards allegations were made about the influence of the Prime Minister of Grenada, who was on the judging panel.
She was born in St. George's, Grenada. She was 22 when she won the Miss World contest in December 1970 and so the more likely of the two dates of birth that are reported is 12 March 1948. She studied in London and then worked for the BBC's Caribbean radio service before becoming a flight attendant.
1970 Miss World contest
The 1970 contest was held in London, United Kingdom. It began with a row because the organisers had allowed two entries from South Africa, one black, one white. Then during the evening there were protests by Women's Liberation activists and flour was thrown. The comedian, Bob Hope, was also heckled.
Even greater controversy then followed after the result was announced. Jennifer Hosten won becoming the first Black woman to win Miss World and the coloured contestant from South Africa was placed second. The BBC and newspapers received numerous protests about the result and accusations of racism were made by all sides. Four of the nine judges had given first-place votes to Miss Sweden, while Miss Grenada received only two firsts, yet the Swedish entrant finished fourth. Furthermore the Prime Minister of Grenada, Sir Eric Gairy, was on the judging panel. Inevitably there were many accusations that the contest had been rigged. Some of the audience gathered in the street outside Royal Albert Hall after the contest and chanted "Swe-den, Swe-den". Four days later the organising director, Julia Morley, resigned because of the intense pressure from the newspapers. Years later Miss Sweden, Majorie Christel Johansson, was reported as saying that she had been cheated out of the title.
Julia Morley's husband, Eric Morley, was the chairman of the company that owned the Miss World franchise. To disprove the accusations, Eric Morley put the judging panel's ballot cards on view and described the complex "majority vote system". These cards showed that Jennifer Hosten had more place markings in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th positions over Miss Sweden and the other five finalists. Julia Morley then resumed her job. However many still felt Sir Gairy on the judging panel had influenced the other judges to give Jennifer token placings.
After the contest
Jennifer joined Bob Hope on his annual tour to U.S. forces overseas and made numerous other personal appearances all over the world with quiet dignity despite the controversy surrounding her victory.
Jennifer then worked with Air Canada in customer relations, and married one of the airline’s executives, David Craig. They lived in Bermuda until 1973, when they moved to Ontario, Canada. Hosten gained a Masters of Arts in Political Science and International Relations from Carleton University, Ottawa. She has two children, a daughter: Sophia Craig, and son: Beau Craig. Jennifer Hosten Craig was High Commissioner to Canada from Grenada from 1978 to 1981. In 1998 she served as Technical Adviser on Trade to the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) while living on the island of St. Lucia. More recently she worked as a Canadian diplomat (Aid Division) at the Canadian High Commission in Dhaka, Bangladesh before returning to the Caribbean.
With her second husband, Shaun Sarsfield, Jennifer Hosten opened Jenny's Place, beachfront studio apartments on Grand Anse beach in Grenada in August 2005.
In late 2006, Jennifer was appointed the National Director of the Miss Grenada World Contest. The event took place on March 31, 2007, and chose only the third Grenadian woman in history to compete at the Miss World finals.
Her autobiography, Beyond Miss World was published in 2008.