Miss USA R'Bonney Nola Gabriel was crowned Miss Universe 2022 on Saturday evening at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center in Louisiana.

Photo: Jason Kempin/Getty

Gabriel bested 83 other contestants from all across the globe leaving Venezuela's Amanda Dudamel and Dominican Republic's Andreína Martínez as the 1st and 2nd runner-up, respectively. She is the first Miss USA to win Miss Universe in 10 years. The last Miss USA to take home the crown was Olivia Culpo in 2012.

Photo: Jason Kempin/Getty

One of the questions that the judges asked Gabriel was, “Miss Universe recently made an inclusive change allowing mothers and married women to compete this year. What’s another change you’d like to see and why?” Her answer was about how we should not be held back by our age.

“For me, I would like to see an age increase because I am 28 years old and that is the oldest age to compete. I think it’s a beautiful thing. My favourite quote is ‘If not now, then when?’ As a woman, I believe that age does not define us. It’s not tomorrow, it’s not yesterday, but it’s now. The time is now that you can go after what you want.”, said Gabriel.

Photo: Benjamin Askinas/MUO


R’Bonney is an eco-friendly fashion designer, model, and sewing instructor with an excitement for life. She attributes her opportunistic outlook to her upbringing immersed in the arts, sports, and travel. As a high-school volleyball player who pivoted to fashion, she quickly fell in love with constructing designs with fabrics and textiles at the young age of 15. At the University of North Texas, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Fashion Design with a Minor in Fibers in 2018. She is currently CEO of her own sustainable clothing line, R’Bonney Nola.

R’Bonney is the lead sewing instructor at Magpies & Peacocks, a Houston based non-profit design house that is dedicated to using “Fashion As A Force For Good” through sustainability and community impact. As a “Gucci Changemakers” recipient, they were honored for their work of diverting unwanted textiles and fabrics from landfills and turning them into fashion collections. Within the “MAKR” program, she teaches sewing classes to women that have survived human trafficking and domestic violence.

As the first Filipino-American to win Miss USA, she shares the importance of embracing your culture. As a voice for Asian-Americans, she opens the door for more diversity and representation in society and was honored to be published in Vogue Philippines. R’Bonney’s mission is for women and young girls to see themselves in her, and feel inspired to conquer their goals by owning who they are.


Popular Posts