Miss New York, Mallory Hytes Hagan, was crowned Miss America 2013 at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip.

The 23-year-old contestant from Brooklyn looked elegant in a white gown, as she received the crown from Miss America 2012, Miss Wisconsin, Laura Kaeppeler. She also won a $50,000 (approximately £30,000) scholarship and will be recognised as the organisation's role model and brand ambassador for the year. She will also go on tour and work to raise money for the Children's Miracle Network, the organisation's official charity.

"Sandy may have swept away our shores, but never our spirit. I'm Miss New York, Mallory Hagan," she said in her introduction at the beginning of the show.

Miss New York was impressive right from the start, when she looked stunning in an all-black bikini (for the swimsuit segment) and performed a tap dance to James Brown's Get Up Off Of That Thing in the talent round.

And during the Question-and-Answer segment, Good Morning America weather anchor Sam Champion asked her about gun control and if schools should hire armed guards in the wake of the tragic shooting spree at the Sandy Hook Elementary School.

"I don't think the proper way is to fight violence is with violence," she replied, "I think the proper way is to educate people on guns and the ways we can use them properly. We can lock them up, we can have gun safety classes, we can have a longer waiting period."

Miss South Carolina was declared the first runner-up and Miss Oklahoma became the second.

The event was hosted by television host Chris Harrison and actress and model Brooke Burke-Charvet. Along with Champion, other judges were fashion designer Bradley Bayou, Dancing with the Stars pro-dancer Cheryl Burke, former Entertainment Tonight host Mary Hart, Shark Tank entrepreneur Daymond John, Olympic gymnast McKayla Maroney and Miss America 2009, Katie Stam Irk.

Check out stunning photographs of Miss America 2013, Mallory Hytes Hagan...

Miss New York Mallory Hytes Hagan reacts after being crowned Miss America 2013 during the Miss America Pageant in Las VegasReuters
Miss New York Hagan reacts with first runner up Miss South Carolina Rogers after being named Miss America 2013 in Las VegasReuters
Miss America 2013 Mallory Hytes Hagan, 23, Miss New York, poses during a news conference in Las VegasReuters
Miss America 2013 Mallory Hytes Hagan, Miss New York, poses with a football during a news conference in Las VegasReuters
Mallory Hytes Hagan, Miss New York, competes in the evening gown portion of the Miss America Pageant in Las VegasReuters
Mallory Hytes Hagan, Miss New York, answers a question about gun control during the Miss America Pageant in Las VegasReuters
Mallory Hytes Hagan, Miss New York, tap dances during the talent portion of the Miss America Pageant in Las VegasReuters
Mallory Hytes Hagan, Miss New York, competes in the Lifestyle & Fitness portion of the Miss America Pageant in Las VegasReuters