Tags: miss america | savvy shields | crown | miss arkansas

Miss America 2017 is Miss Arkansas Savvy Shields

Image: Miss America 2017 is Miss Arkansas Savvy Shields

The outgoing Miss America, Betty Cantrell, back, crowns the Miss America winner Miss Arkansas Savvy Shields, while Lynn Weidner, right, assists during the Miss America 2017 pageant Sunday in Atlantic City. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

By    |   Monday, 12 Sep 2016 12:33 PM

Miss Arkansas Savvy Shields was crowned Miss America 2017 by outgoing Miss America Betty Cantrell Sunday night in Atlantic City.

Shields, who topped a field of 52 contestants, is an art major at the University of Arkansas who desires to help people make better food choices. She also dreams of a day when she’ll be able to take the stage with BeyoncΓ© as a backup dancer, The Associated Press noted.

In being crowned the new Miss America, Shields topped the following runners-up: Fourth runner-up, Miss Mississippi Laura Lee Lewis; third runner-up, Miss Washington Alicia Cooper; second runner-up Miss New York Camille Sims; first runner-up Miss South Carolina Rachel Wyatt.

Shields also beat out Miss Missouri Erin O’Flaherty, the first openly gay contestant to compete in the Miss America pageant, according to the AP. O’Flaherty was also the first openly gay contestant to win a state title.

Shields, 21, impressed the judges during a jazz routine, which also won her the preliminary talent competition earlier in the week, USA Today noted.

When she took the stage during the question portion of the night and was asked what she thought of Hillary Clinton, Shields said, “If you’re trying to be leader of the free world, everything you do and say matters…It’s hard to tell what is truth and what is truly scandal, but both of these candidates have done a great job,” Us Magazine reported, calling the answer "puzzling."

Expanding on her comments about the political climate after the ceremony, Shields said, "Our country was founded on compromise. I really think we're in a state now where both parties seem to just be yelling at each other. I hope that by the end of my year, we're starting to reward politicians on compromising instead of just defending themselves."

Shields will take the traditional skip along the beach in Atlantic City across from Boardwalk Hall on Monday.

The new Miss America received support on social media.

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Miss Arkansas Savvy Shields was crowned Miss America 2017 by outgoing Miss America Betty Cantrell Sunday night in Atlantic City.
miss america, savvy shields, crown, miss arkansas
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2016-33-12
Monday, 12 Sep 2016 12:33 PM
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