Judges

We are pleased to announce our judges for the 2013 Miss & Mister Deaf International Pageant.

Head Judge Alan SPO Schwartz – USA

Alan SPO Schwartz

Alan SPO Schwartz

Alan SPO Schwartz, the “SPO”, a nickname, standing for “Sign Performance Only”, is a native of Chicago  and is third generation Deaf.  He has lived  in Los Angeles, California for the last 25 years where he works as a Realtor, he was the first Deaf person to pass the state exam and has been helping both Deaf and hearing with the purchases of homes. SPO has had an acting career acting in television, movies and stage productions.  SPO, himself has held 5 former titles.  He has been the Master of Ceremonies at many events  and has been invited to be a judge on more than one occasion.  SPO has worked with MMDI for a few years  Alan has traveled extensively,  but coming to Sofia, Bulgaria is a new and exciting experience for him.  He looks forward to the new Culture and the new friends he will make here at MMDI Bulgaria!
Good Luck to All the Contestants!!

Judge Lenka Prokes – London

Lenka Prokes

Lenka Prokes

Lenka is currently working at TERRA CONSULTANCY as a SAP Human Resource Manager and Media Manager on work placement and also studying at the Brunel University of Business and Management eSystems fourth year. In the past, she has won the crown of “Miss Junior of Czech Republic 2002″, and has also been a judge in several beauty pageants, including “Miss Deaf World”, “Miss Czech Republic” and “Miss Teplice”.Lenka was also a model herself for 5 years and prides herself on helping deaf beauty contestants to boost their self esteem in competitions.Her hobbies include skiing, travelling and business.

Judge Laura Levita Valyte – Lithuania

Laura-Levita Valyte

Laura-Levita Valyte

Laura was born in Vilnius, Lithuania. She is deaf, she is a dancer, an actress and a model. Her childhood was spent in the theaters and dance recitals of Lithuania. In 2010 she entered the  “Miss Deaf International” beauty pageant and won 3rd place. She has also participated in “Kvieciu Sokti 2010”  ( similar to  “Dancing with the Stars”) and won the title in 2010. Her other accomplishments include Walk On Podium and Fotomodel. During her spare time she enjoys reading books, travelling and and live art.

Judge Jeff Ditcher – USA

Jeff Ditcher

Jeff Ditcher

Jeff Dichter is a teacher in American Sign Language and Mathematics. He was born in Los Angeles, California and worked at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. for ten years. He had served four different Deaf organizations as a treasurer and he is very pleased to serve MMDI as a treasurer. Mr. Dichter wishes each participant to have a happy journey to achieve a dream of becoming Mr. Deaf International and Miss Deaf International.


Judge Ipek D Mehlum – Norway

Ipek D Mehlum

Ipek D Mehlum

Ipek D. Mehlum has performed in over twenty productions in theatre. Ipek was nominated for the Hedda Award in 2010 for Best Actress in the title role in Pinocchio. She has also appeared in Tolv på fem Psykose by Sarah Kane, and Cyrano at Deaf West Theater in Los Angeles. Currently, Ipek is playing the lead role of Jack in Jack and the Beanstalk by Teater Manu, which is garnering recognition worldwide. This fall, Ipek is featured in one of the leading roles in a new NRK drama series, Møkkakaffe, produced by Døves Media in Norway.


Judge Jimmy Houamria – France

Judge Jimmy Houamria

Judge Jimmy Houamria

Jimmy is a fitness coach specializing in athletics. He also does private, one on one personal coaching and is a specialist in nutrition. He works with sports schools and was a Fitness Judge in the 2007 French Championships and the 2008 European Championships.


Judge Irina Papazova – Bulgaria

Irina Papazova

Irina Papazova

No stranger to the world of pageants, Irina Papazova has held many titles in her career, including Ford Models Super Model of Bulgaria 1993 and participant of Super Model of the World – Florida, USA, 1993. Irina has been working as a model since 1992 in the USA, Germany, Italy, France, Portugal and many other countries. Since 1998, she has been the General Manager of Intersound Ltd.and Intermodels, a modeling agency and owners of Miss Bulgaria, Queen of Bulgaria, Super Model of Bulgaria, Little Miss & Mister Bulgaria, Miss Teen Bulgaria, Little Miss & Mister Planet and Miss European Union.  Irina is a representative of Ford Models and has participated in more than 15 international pageants, including Miss Europe, Super Model of the World, Miss Model of the World, Model of the year, Miss Bikini, Manhunt International, Miss Tourism International and Little Miss World and Europe.  In the past, she has also been invited to be an international judge for several pageants including Miss Europe 2002, Queen of Europe 2000, Miss Model of the World 1999, 2003, Little Miss World 2004-2006 and Little Miss Europe 2005-2006.

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