R’Bonney Gabriel was honored with the Miss Universe crown worth a $5.58 million. , Photo Credit: Twitter/@MissUniverse
R’Bonney Gabriel of the United States was crowned Miss Universe on January 15 morning at a ceremony in New Orleans. India’s Divita Rai, who made it to the top 16, missed out on the beauty pageant. Venezuela and the Dominican Republic were the runners-up.
R’Bonney is a fashion designer, model, and sewing instructor. At the University of North Texas, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Fashion Design. She is currently CEO of her own sustainable clothing line, R’Bonney Nola.
The top 16 contestants hailed from Puerto Rico, Haiti, Australia, Dominican Republic, Laos, South Africa, Portugal, Canada, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Curacao, India1, Venezuela, Spain, US, and Colombia.
Ms. Rai, a native of Mangaluru, who could not make it to the top-5 cut, hails from a family in Thiruvail. Daughter of Dilip Rai and Pranita Rai, Ms. Divita studied in Mumbai. She was judged Liva Miss Diva Universe 2022 and got qualified for the Miss Universe contest.
The last Miss Universe winner was actor-model Harnaaz Sandhu, who made history when she was crowned Miss Universe 2021 beating contestants from 80 countries—21 years after India last brought home the title. Only two Indians before Ms. Sandhu had won the title of Miss Universe— actors Sushmita Sen in 1994 and Lara Dutta in 2000.