Former Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters will soon be hearing wedding bells after Tim Tebow popped the question to her this week.
The former NFL quarterback proposed to Nel-Peters, 23, at sunset on Wednesday at his family’s farm outside of Jacksonville, Florida, PEOPLE exclusively revealed.
Tebow, 31, sealed the deal with a 7.25-carat solitaire ring and secretly flew Nel-Peters’ family and closest friends from South Africa to Florida to witness the intimate engagement.
The couple first starting dating over the summer, with Tebow confirming the news during an interview with ESPN.
“She is a really special girl and I am very lucky and blessed for her coming into my life,” he said. “I am usually very private with these things but I am very thankful.”
Here’s everything to know about the athlete’s wife-to-be.
1. She is the former Miss South Africa and Miss Universe 2017
After being crowned Miss South Africa in March 2017, Nel-Peters instantly qualified for both the Miss Universe and Miss Worlds pageant. Due to their proximity of their competition dates, Nel-Peters chose to attend the Miss Universe pageant, which was held in Las Vegas — her first time visiting the United States.
She eventually went on to win Miss Universe in November, becoming just the second titleholder from South Africa. The last woman to claim the title from the country was Margaret Gardiner in 1978.
Of her time as Miss Universe, Nel-Peters revealed it “wasn’t what I expected it to be at all.”
“The role exceeded all my expectations and surprised me with the most everlasting experiences and memories,” she said on Instagram. “I got to explore countries in every corner of the world, meet thousands of people, learn new languages and experience new cultures and perspectives.”
2. She has a background in business
Nel-Peters received her bachelor’s degree in business management from North-West University in South Africa. She’s also fluent in both English and Afrikaans.
As a student in high school, Nel-Peters made history for holding two leadership positions, according to her biography on Miss Universe.
“I was the first girl in my high school to be chosen as head girl of both my school and my hostel,” she further explained to Jacaranda FM. “I was also elected as the Deputy Junior Mayor of the George City Council in grade 11.”
RELATED: Tim Tebow Is Engaged to Former Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters
3. She’s inspired by her half-sister — and ambitious women
In an interview with Jacaranda FM, Nel-Peters revealed that her sister, who was born without a key brain structure, was her biggest motivation.
“It’s always been his dream to go into the hospitality industry,” she said. “I have a 10-year-old half-sister, Franje. She is my dad and step-mom’s daughter. She was born without a cerebellum and is completely disabled. She is my biggest motivator in life (and she has the most beautiful lashes any girl can dream of).”
As for her role models? Nel-Peters told the radio station, “I admire woman like Marissa Mayer, the first female engineer and …read more