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Miss USA 2012 Crowned: 7 Things to Know About Rhode Island's Olivia Culpo

The new Miss USA 2012, Olivia Culpo

Olivia Culpo of Rhode Island is the new Miss USA 2012. The 20-year-old is a Boston University sophomore who will now take a year off to accomplish duties related to the pageant and ultimately represent the nation in the 61st Miss Universe contest in December.

After making it to the final five, Culpo voiced her support for transgender beauty queens during the interview round.

“Would you feel it would be fair that a transgender woman wins the Miss USA title over a natural-born woman?” asked celebrity judge Rob Kardashian. I think her answer was perfect.

“I do think that that would be fair, but I can understand that people would be a little apprehensive to take that road because there is a tradition of natural-born women, but today where there are so many surgeries and so many people out there who have a need to change for a happier life, I do accept that because I believe it’s a free country,” Culpo said.

As Fox News reports, Culpo said after the pageant that she wasn’t put off by the question when she heard it.

“This is a free country and to each their own,” she said.

So just who is the Miss USA and what is she all about? Click onward to read 7 fun facts about Olivia Culpo.


  • Describes Herself as a Nerd 1 of 7
    Describes Herself as a Nerd
    Culpo has been playing the cello since third grade although she didn't get to play during the pageant because there is no talent competition. Culpo describes herself as a "nerd" who spent summers at band camp. Both parents also started their careers as musicians.
    Photo credit: MissRhodeIslandUSAFacebook
  • Late Bloomer 2 of 7
    Late Bloomer
    Culpo said she was short and chubby as a girl but blossomed after a growth spurt. "Short and chubby" was the description read about her as she walked the stage in a bikini during the pageant's swimsuit round.
    Photo credit: MissRhodeIslandUSAFacebook
  • Idolizes Audrey Hepburn 3 of 7
    Idolizes Audrey Hepburn
    Culpos aspires to be more like Hollywood icon Audrey Hepburn. She sang the chorus of "Funny Face" from her favorite movie of the same name after her win. After winning her crown Sunday night Culpo says she plans to go to Tiffany & Co. in New York and recreate Hepburn's iconic opening scene from "Breakfast at Tiffany's."
    Photo credit: MissRhodeIslandUSAFacebook
  • Big Family 4 of 7
    Big Family
    Culpo comes from a big, Italian family and speaks some Italian. She is in the middle of five children.
    Photo credit: MissRhodeIslandUSAFacebook
  • Beauty and Brains 5 of 7
    Beauty and Brains
    Culpo is a 2010 graduate of St. Mary Academy Bay View, an all-girls Catholic school in Riverside, where she was a member of the National Honor Society. The College of General Studies student has made it on the Dean's List every semester, according to her Miss USA bio.
    Photo credit: MissRhodeIslandUSAFacebook
  • Modesty Wins! 6 of 7
    Modesty Wins!
    Culpo had one of the more modest dresses of the contest, with many of the beauty queens wearing revealing gowns with bare backs, high slits and sheer fabric. In contrast, Culpo's flowing gown covered her legs and lower back.
    Photo credit: missuniverse.com
  • New to the Pageant Circuit 7 of 7
    New to the Pageant Circuit
    Culpo says that when she won the Miss Rhode Island pageant last year it was her first pageant ever.
    Photo credit: MissRhodeIslandUSAFacebook

Top Photo Credit: missuniverse.com

Read more from Monica on Strollerderby:

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You can also find Monica on her personal blog, The Girl Who.

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