Michelle Dee wins Spirit of Carnival Award at Miss Universe 2023, other special awards
MANILA, Philippines — Despite exiting Miss Universe 2023 at the Top 10, the Philippines' Michelle Dee managed to take home two wins from the 72nd Miss Universe pageant in El Salvador.
In the middle of the coronation night, Michelle was announced as one of the Gold winners for the Voice for Change alongside Ana Coimbra from Angola and Karla Guilfú from Puerto Rico, the latter finishing in the Top 5.
Michelle's advocacy was dedicated to autism awareness for individuals on the spectrum, inspired by two of her siblings with autism.
Silver finalists with three winners were representatives from Brazil, Chile, Lebanon, Singapore, South Africa, Ukraine and Zimbabwe.
The Filipino beauty queen also received the Spirit of Carnival Award presented by pageant sponsor Carnival Cruises.
Related: 'Thank you for raising our flag with me': Michelle Dee sends love to Filipinos after Miss Universe 2023 Top 10 finish
Last year's winner of the same award was Ukraine's Viktoria Apanasenko, who also won Best National Costume.
The only other special award given out at Miss Universe 2023 was Miss Congeniality, which went to Spain's Athenea Pérez, with hometown bet Isabella García-Manzo just behind her.
Sheynnis Palacios from Nicaragua was crowned Miss Universe 2023 by her predecessor, the Filipino-American R'Bonney Gabriel. This is Nicaragua's first-ever Miss Universe crown after four placements since joining in 1955.
Anntonia Porsild from Thailand followed Sheynnis as the 1st runner-up. She will take over as Miss Universe in the event Sheynnis is unable to perform her duties.
Michelle's Top 10 finish marks the Philippines' return to the semifinals after her predecessor, Celeste Cortesi, ended the country's 12-year streak of progressing out of the initial round last year.
The 12-year streak included two coronations, Pia Wurtzbach in 2015 and Catriona Gray in 2018.
RELATED: Sheynnis Palacios of Nicaragua wins Miss Universe 2023, first for her country