Amelia Vega

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Amelia Vega
Beauty pageant titleholder
Amelia Vega4.jpg
Amelia Vega, Miss Universe 2003
Born Amelia Vega Polanco
(1984-11-07) November 7, 1984 (age 30)
Santiago de los Caballeros, Dominican Republic[1]
Residence Miami, Florida, U.S.
Occupation Singer, actress, model
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Measurements 90-60-90 cm[2]
Hair color Brown
Eye color Brown
Title(s) Miss Dominican Republic 2002
Miss Universe 2003
Miss Dominican Republic 2002
Miss Universe 2003
Spouse Al Horford (m. 2011)
Children 1
Official website

Amelia Vega Polanco[a] (born November 7, 1984 in Santiago de los Caballeros, Dominican Republic) is a Dominican actress, singer, model, charity worker and beauty queen. She became the first Dominican woman to be named Miss Universe, in 2003. At the age of 18, she was the youngest winner since 1994.[3]

Vega’s father, Otto Vega, is a general medical practitioner with offices in New York City and Miami. Her mother, Patricia Polanco Álvarez, is a licenced Pilot and was also a previous national titleholder who represented the Dominican Republic in 1980 at the Miss World pageant. Vega is niece-in-law of the Grammy Award–winning singer Juan Luis Guerra and wife of NBA player Al Horford. Additionally, Amelia attended and graduated from Barbizon Modeling and Acting School in Santo Domingo.[4]

Her paternal line goes back to José Rafael Vega, a Cuban immigrant that arrived to the Dominican Republic in the 1860s, whose lineage can be traced back to the English King, William the Conqueror, and the Castilian King Alfonso X.[5][6][7][8]

Miss Universe[edit]

The competition[edit]

After winning the Miss Dominican Republic title, Vega represented the Dominican Republic in the Miss Universe 2003 pageant held in Panama City, Panama on June 3, 2003. She became the first delegate from this country to win the title.[9]

Amelia Vega was crowned in Panama. She wore a white evening gown during the competition, which featured strings of beads on the sleeves.

As Miss Universe 2003, Vega traveled extensively working with internationally recognized HIV/AIDS organizations including the Global Health Council, Cable Positive, amfAR, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and God's Love We Deliver. As a celebrity spokesperson, she was responsible for working with the international media to generate a better understanding and acceptance of AIDS/HIV epidemics and its prevention while helping to increase awareness, funding and resources for these key organizations.

As Miss Universe, Vega represented the Miss Universe Organization. Her "sister" 2003 titleholders were Tami Farrell (Miss Teen USA, of Oregon) and Susie Castillo (Miss USA, of Massachusetts). Vega is the third among Miss Universe winners who also won the National Costume competition. Thailand's Porntip Nakhirunkanok won the award in 1988 and eventually won the crown then, Wendy Fitzwilliam of Trinidad & Tobago also won the Best National Costume and went on to win the 1998 Miss Universe crown. At the time she was the youngest woman since 1994 to win Miss Universe[3] (until Zuleyka Rivera in 2006).


After moving to an apartment in New York provided by Donald Trump which was part of her overall prize package as the new Miss Universe titleholder, Vega visited over 30 countries around the world including: Dominican Republic, Germany, Switzerland, Ecuador, Canada, Chile, China, Indonesia, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Thailand, Vietnam, Russia and numerous trips around the USA. Vega returned to her home country several times, and was awarded an honorary medal in the 2003 Pan American Games, held in Santo Domingo. Later that year, Vega co-hosted the Festival Presidente de Música Latina.


Vega has appeared on the cover of several magazines, from her country's local Mujer Unica and Oh! Magazine, up to internationally known Cosmopolitan, Caras, InStyle, Vanidades, Harper's Bazaar, Glamour, and Selecta. She also has been the lead image for campaigns made by the beauty cosmetics company Cover Girl, for the past 4 years.

Vega debuted as a singer with her uncle Juan Luis Guerra in Madison Square Garden and American Airline's Arena. After her reign as Miss Universe came to an end, Vega worked as the host of the reality show Voces de América, that aired on the Telemundo network. She also hosted several editions of "Festival Presidente" where more than 60,000 people attended, Later she hosted "Suegras", a reality show broadcast in the US and Latin America. Her film debut was in 2005, co-starring in the film The Lost City directed by Andy García. She had a special in Homie Spumoni, a motion picture starring Donald Faison and Whoopi Goldberg, among others and was scheduled and released in summer 2008.

In 2010 she became the host of the Mexican reality show "Segunda Oportunidad" with the Chilean Rafael Araneda

She also performed the video of "Mi corazoncito" of Dominican bachata music group Aventura.


After recording her first demo at 15 years old and starting her artistic career on musicals in her hometown at the same age, Amelia's first single "Pasa Un Segundito" was released by iTunes on April 26, 2010. It became a top Latin song in just two days. A couple months later she surprises with her environmental song Smog. She announced on her Twitter account that her complete album "Agua Dulce" will be released on August 30, 2011 first on iTunes. She began promoting her music in Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Panama, Dominican Republic "where she opened the concert for Mark Anthony And Chayanne in front of a crowd of 50,000 people".[10][11]


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Vega is as well concentrated on the development of her business career. She owns two Boutiques in Miami, Florida where she resides, named "Essence By Amelia Vega"


Vega is on the cover of the only book the Miss Universe Organization has published, which is called Universal Beauty. Donald Trump named her his favorite Miss Universe ever, even mentioning her in one of his books.

Personal life[edit]

On December 24, 2011, Vega married NBA player Al Horford, after two years of dating.[12] On February 23, 2015, Vega gave birth to their first child, a son named Ean Horford Vega.[13]


  • Homie Spumoni (2006) .... Amelia Vega as (Chanice)
  • The Lost City (2005) .... Minerva Eros

Charity work[edit]

She still cooperates with several charity foundations to date, such as, Go Red For Women, Inisiatica Ser (Breast Cancer) Global Health Council, Cable Positive, amfAR, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, and God's Love We Deliver.


  1. ^
    This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Vega and the second or maternal family name is Polanco.


  1. ^ "Ayuntamiento de Santiago reconoce a Miss Universo Amelia Vega" (in Spanish). Santiago de los Caballeros: El Nuevo Diario. 14 July 2009. Retrieved 18 July 2015. La beldad dominicana, quien se confiesa orgullosa de ser nativa de esta "Ciudad Corazón",... 
  2. ^ "EL UNIVERSO : Noticias del Ecuador y del mundo". Retrieved 2012-09-15. [dead link]
  3. ^ a b Miss Dominican Republic was crowned Miss Universe 2003
  4. ^ "Barbizon Modeling and Acting School Alumni". 
  5. ^ (Spanish) Familia Dominicana Con Ancestros Reales: Los Vega Part 1/4
  6. ^ (Spanish) Familia Dominicana Con Ancestros Reales: Los Vega Part 2/4
  7. ^ (Spanish) Familia Dominicana Con Ancestros Reales: Los Vega Part 4/4
  8. ^ (Spanish) Descendientes de un Conquistador: Los Vega Part 2/2
  9. ^ Amelia Vega Biography[dead link]
  10. ^ "iTunes - Music - Pasa un Segundito - Single by Amelia Vega". 2010-04-23. Retrieved 2012-09-02. 
  11. ^ "iTunes - Music - Smog - Single by Amelia Vega". 2011-02-09. Retrieved 2012-09-02. 
  12. ^ "Amelia Vega se casa con Al Horford - Hoy Digital". Retrieved 2012-09-02. 
  13. ^

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Panama Justine Pasek
Miss Universe
Succeeded by
Australia Jennifer Hawkins
Preceded by
San Pedro de Macorís Ruth Ocumárez
Miss Dominican Republic
Succeeded by
La Vega Larimar Fiallo
Preceded by
Isaura Montás
Miss Santiago
Succeeded by
Pamela Sued