Miss Universe 2017 is Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters. Demi-Leigh has always strived for greatness and as a high school student, she was the first girl to be chosen as head girl for both the school and its hostel.
She was also elected as Deputy Junior Mayor of the George City Council when she was just in grade 11. Demi-Leigh knows the value of hard work and has graduated in BC Business Management and Entrepreneurship, while modelling part-time for Boss Models and Vision Management Cape Town.
When she isn’t hitting the books, you can find Demi-Leigh unwinding with scrap booking and making handmade cards in her Western Cape home of Sedgefield. The small and unique town along the Garden Route, Demi-Leigh used to watch Miss South Africa with the dream to one day wear the prestigious crown herself. She owes a lot to the support of her four parents, who all instilled positive qualities and love into how she was raised.
Demi-Leigh also says that her greatest motivator is her half-sister who was born without a cerebellum and is completely disabled. She explains that her sister’s positivity and drive as a huge motivator for her own attitude and determination.
Though extremely accomplished life has not always been easy for Demi-Leigh. Demi has competed in pageantry for years before winning the crown and then a month after she won Miss South Africa she was “hijacked and held at gunpoint.” This harrowing experience led her to found a self-defense campaign called Unbreakable. The campaign is all about equipping women with knowledge and skills to empower themselves so they can avoid a similar situation.
Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters is the second South African to win the title of Miss Universe since the pageant’s inception in 1956. Prior to Nel-Peters, Margaret Gardiner won Miss South Africa and went on to win the Miss Universe crown in 1978.
Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters mother name is Anne-Mari Steenkamp, and Demi’s father’s name is Bennie Peters.
She ended her reign on December 17, 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand, the host nation of the 2018 Miss Universe pageant. She eventually crowned Catriona Gray of the Philippines as her successor.