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From Las Vegas, NV, on Sunday, June 3, 2012 – This evening, during one of the year’s most watched live television events, a star-studded panel of judges chose Miss Rhode Island USA, Olivia Culpo, as Miss USA 2012. Bravo’s “Watch What Happens: Live” host and executive producer Andy Cohen and “E! News” co-anchor Giuliana Rancic returned as hosts of the 61st Annual MISS USA® Competition from Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in one of the world’s most electrifying cities, Las Vegas. Kelly Osbourne of E!’s “Fashion Police” and Jeannie Mai of Style Network’s “How Do I Look?,” were also on hand providing color commentary throughout the LIVE telecast.

Olivia Culpo is a 19 year-old from Cranson, Rhode Island and is a sophomore at Boston University where she has made the Dean’s List every semester. She grew up in a musical environment. Culpo has played cello for 13 years, sings, and plays the piano. As a cellist, Olivia won seats in Boston Symphony Hall and New York’s famed Carnegie Hall.

The judging panel for the 2012 MISS USA® Competition included: Cat Cora, Chef, Philanthropist, Author and Co-Host of Bravo’s Around the World in 80 Plates; Ali Fedotowsky, Host of NBC TV’s “First Look” and Former Bachelorette; Arsenio Hall, Late Night Legend and Celebrity Apprentice Winner; Marilu Henner, New York Time Best-Selling Author, Actress, and Producer; Joe Jonas, Actor and Grammy Nominated Musician; Rob Kardashian, TV Personality and Entrepreneur; George Kotsiopoulos, Co-Host of E! “Fashion Police;” and Dayana Mendoza, Miss Universe 2008.

During the telecast, Akon performed “America’s Most Wanted” from his upcoming album, “Stadium,” during the “Final Look” portion of the pageant featuring the Top Five Finalists, and Cobra Starship performed a special medley that included both “#1Nite” and “You Make Me Feel” during the swimsuit competition.

Throughout the two-hour event, the contestants competed in three categories: swimsuit, evening gown and interview. Alyssa Campanella, Miss USA 2011, crowned her successor at the conclusion of the telecast, before an estimated worldwide viewing audience of more than 250 million.

For the second year in a row, fans voted online for their favorite contestant up until the evening before the telecast. The contestant with the most votes automatically reached the semifinals (Top 16).

Final Results:

  • First Runner Up: Miss Maryland USA, Nana Meriwether, will assume the duties of Miss USA 2012 if the titleholder is named Miss Universe 2012 or if for some reason Miss USA cannot fulfill her duties.
  • Second Runner Up: Miss Ohio USA, Audrey Bolte
  • Rest of Top Five:
  • Miss Georgia USA, Jasmyn “Jazz” Wilkins
  • Miss Nevada USA, Jade Kelsall
  • Rest of Top Ten:
  • Miss Alabama USA, Katherine Webb
  • Miss Oklahoma USA, Lauren Lundeen
  • Miss Texas USA, Brittany Booker
  • Miss Colorado USA, Marybel Gonzalez
  • Miss New Jersey USA, Michelle Leonardo
  • Rest of Top Sixteen:
  • Miss Tennessee USA, Jessica Hibler
  • Miss Michigan USA, Kristin Danyal
  • Miss Louisiana USA, Erin Edmiston
  • Miss Maine USA, Rani Williamson
  • Miss South Carolina USA, Erika Powell
  • Miss Arkansas USA, Kelsey Dow [Winner of the Fan Vote]

MISS PHOTOGENIC USA™ Award: Miss Oregon USA, Alaina Bergsma. A blue ribbon panel selected the delegate who exemplifies beauty through the lens of a camera. She was awarded a $1,000 cash prize.

MISS CONGENIALITY USA™ Award: Miss Iowa USA, Rebecca Hodge. The award reflects the respect and admiration of the contestant’s peers, who voted for her as the most congenial, charismatic and inspirational participant. She was awarded a $1,000 cash prize.

The MISS USA® 2012 prize package includes: a custom diamond tiara and jewelry designed by Diamond Nexus Labs; a one year scholarship (including housing) from the New York Film Academy; a year’s worth of hair care products and tools from Farouk Systems; an assortment of high fashion bracelets made in Rwanda by women of the Same Sky Trade Initiative; an eveningwear wardrobe by Sherri Hill; a swimwear wardrobe by Kooey Australia; a shoe wardrobe from Chinese Laundry; a year’s supply of make-up from Rain Cosmetics; a year’s worth of sun care products from Australian Gold; luxury accommodations in a New York City apartment for the duration of her reign, including living expenses; a year-long salary as Miss USA; personal services including membership to Gravity Fitness and hair services from John Barrett Salon; modeling portfolio by leading fashion photographer Fadil Berisha; dermatology and skincare services provided by Dr. Cheryl Thellman-Karcher; professional health and nutrition consultation by Tanya Zuckerbrot, MS, RD and dental services by Dr. Jan Linhart, D.D.S.; casting opportunities and professional representation by the Miss Universe Organization; extensive travel opportunities representing sponsors and charitable partners; access to various New York City events including movie premiers and screenings, Broadway shows and launch parties; year long consultation with Miss Universe Organization’s Official Fashion Consultant, Alisha Crutchfield and access to a personal appearance wardrobe; professional media/public relations training and representation by Rubenstein Public Relations in New York City and the opportunity to represent the USA at the 2012 Miss Universe pageant.

The Miss Universe Organization, a Donald J. Trump and NBC Universal joint venture, is a global community empowering role models of beauty, health and leadership for young women of today. As part of the Miss Universe Organization, Miss USA is dedicated to partnering with charities around the world, and to increasing awareness of breast and ovarian cancers. For more information, visit: www.missusa.com.

Sources: Miss Universe Organization, Donald J. Trump and NBC Universal 
Photos credit to: Richard Harbaugh,

Editor’s Note: Congratulations to Olivia Culpo for winning this competition.

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