KNYSNA NEWS - The Knysna local who is in the running for Mr South Africa is definitely a triple treat with his beautifully defined abs, a master's degree in architecture and a personality to match.
Leon van der Westhuizen, who works at CMAI Architects, is originally from Piketberg and obtained his masters at NMU before relocating to Knysna.
The 27-year-old has represented NMU on numerous occasions for architectural achievements in Italy, Germany, France, Spain and recently in Mexico where he was part of a contingent of top young architects from sub-Saharan Africa and top 5 000 young architects in the world. "I've also represented CMAI Architects in Texas and at the CNU conferences in Seattle," he adds.
Van der Westhuizen says his upbringing played a vital role in shaping the man he is today. "My family and friends reflect the life values that I support and I hope when people meet me, they can tell…"
His biggest challenge to date has been writing his thesis for his master's studies. "It is not an easy course to master but I had great support from my family and friends who motivated me to pull through. Loving what I do as an architect also made the challenge a lot easier."
Having been involved mostly in competitions related to design and architecture, the young bachelor says he entered the competition to step out of his comfort zone. "Mr SA provides me with the opportunity to put myself in situations and challenges I've not been in before. I hope that during this competition I learn more about myself and see what I am capable of."
Should he be crowned Mr SA 2020, the ultimate prize for him would be to represent South Africa on all levels.
"It will also allow me to represent local businesses across South Africa and assist in building a stronger brand. In the end, I really hope that I inspire young people to go and seek opportunities to develop themselves to be the best they can be."
On this front, he extends an invitation to local businesses who wish to be associated with the Mr SA brand to contact him on firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ambitious professional says "enthusiastic" is the one word that sums him up best, and his advice to youngsters is, "Never let other people bring you down, be the best version of yourself and always have fun."
Readers can vote for Van der Westhuizen per SMS by sending MRSA82 to 40439. They can vote as many times as they want and there are great prizes to be won.
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