Shree Saini, 21, was crowned Miss India USA 2017 on Dec. 17.
Saini, who is a student at the University of Washington, told the Press Trust of India that she wants to lead a life dedicated to service. “I believe in working together to create a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts,” Saini said.
The Punjab native, who moved to Washington when she was 7, had a pacemaker implanted at the age of 12 and was told that she would never be able to dance. She was a victim of bullying in high school, and she has spoken at hundreds of events about her health and emotional bullying challenges.
More than 50 contestants from over two dozen states participated in the three different pageants — Miss India USA, Miss Teen India USA, and Mrs India USA.