Updated Jan. 30, 2010 9:45 p.m.

LAS VEGAS (WRCB) - Soddy-Daisy resident Stefanie Wittler is second runner-up in the 2010 Miss America pageant. The third place finish earned her a $20,000 scholarship.

Approximately 50 Chattanooga supporters, including a WRCB intern, were in the 7,000-seat arena at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.

Ms. Wittler sang Dolly Parton's "I'll Always Love You" in the talent portion of the competition and received one of that largest ovations of the evening.

Stefanie Wittler's platform is Ronald McDonald House and she has been a volunteer in Chattanooga since it opened.

Chattanooga viewers may also recognize Stefanie from her sideline reporting during Channel 3's Friday Night Football show last fall.

Miss Virginia, Caressa Cameron, took home the crown and $50,000 scholarship.

Original Story July 2009

Soddy-Daisy (WRCB) - Third time's a charm for the new Miss Tennessee, Stefanie Wittler.  The Soddy-Daisy beauty queen kept returning to Jackson, Tenn., home of the pageant, year after year hoping to capture the title.

"A word I have kept in my heart is perseverance. That is a character trait I will take into the schools with me and to not giving up one something that you really want," Wittler told Eyewitness News. 

Wittler says the crowning moment was literally a dream come true. 

"I've had that dream, and to be standing up there with Miss Memphis, we were the last two standing, it's exactly how I pictured it in my dreams," she said.

The glitz and glamour are only a small part of Stefanie's new job.  She'll be Governor Bredesen's official spokesperson for a safe and drug-free Tennessee.

"If I am here in Hamilton County, I may go to about four or five different schools," she said. 

That leaves Wittler the potential to reach thousands of students in one afternoon.

For the next year the new Miss Tennessee will be promoting her dual platforms: Children's Miracle Network and the Ronald McDonald House. 

"Children's Miracle Network and the Ronald McDonald house go hand-in-hand.  It is a natural partnership.  At the Ronald McDonald House they take care of families whose children are across the street at T.C. Thompson," Wittler told Eyewitness News.

In addition to her daily duties, Wittler will also be preparing to represent the Volunteer State at Miss America.  That pageant will be held in January in Las Vegas.