Kara McCullough edges out Miss New Jersey Chhavi Verg and Miss Minnesota Meridith Gould to be the winner of the 66th Miss USA pageant.
Miss USA pageant has a new winner. At the top of the show held on Sunday, May 14 at Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, Miss District of Columbia Kara McCullough was announced as Miss USA 2017.
She was in the Top 3 along with Miss New Jersey Chhavi Verg and Miss Minnesota Meridith Gould. Each of them was asked the same question about what they thought feminism means and if they considered themselves feminists. Gould said that "[women] are just as equal as men when it comes to opportunity in the workplace" and that feminism should really be called "equalism."
McCullough couldn't hold back her tears as her predecessor Deshauna Barber put the crown on her head. Verg was the first runner-up, while Gould was the second runner-up.
McCullough, a 25-year-old who was born in Italy, earned a bachelor of science degree in chemistry with a concentration in radiochemistry from South Carolina State University that led to a career at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. She also has an outreach program, Science Exploration for Kids, that provides interactive science activities and tutoring.
Earlier in the competition, the 51 finalists were whittled down to 10. The Top 10 were then narrowed down to 5, three of which next moved on to the Top 3. Julianne Hough and Terrence J hosted the 66th Miss USA pageant, with Ashley Graham returning as backstage host.