She was named the first runner-up in the 2007 Miss Teen USA pageant while representing New Jersey and represented California in the 2011 Miss USA pageant. As the reigning Miss USA, she represented the United States in the Miss Universe 2011 pageant held in São Paulo, Brazil, in September 2011, where she finished in the top 16.
She is currently a style and travel blogger.
Campanella was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey on March 21, 1990. She grew up in Manalapan and attended Freehold Township High School in Freehold Township. At age 17, she attended the NY Conservatory for Dramatic Arts where she studied acting for film and television. She also attended the Institute of Culinary Education.
Her father is of Italian descent (from Naples) and her mother is of Danish and German ancestry. Her maternal grandfather immigrated from Helsingør in Denmark.
She began dating Canadian actor Torrance Coombs in 2010. On June 12, 2015, it was announced that she and Coombs had gotten engaged a month earlier. On 2 April 2016, they were married in Santa Ynez, California.
In October 2006, Campanella was crowned Miss New Jersey Teen USA 2007 and represented her state at Miss Teen USA 2007, broadcast live from Pasadena, California on August 24, 2007, placing first runner up to eventual winner, Hilary Cruz of Colorado. She is currently the highest placing New Jersey teen state titleholder in the Miss Teen USA competition. She is the most successful contestant from New Jersey - having placed 1st runner up at Miss Teen USA and later winning Miss USA (even though she represented California).
Campanella competed in the Miss New Jersey USA pageant twice, placing first runner-up in 2008 and in the top fifteen in 2009.
On November 21, 2010, she competed in the Miss California USA pageant and won the title. She was the first Miss Teen USA state delegate to represent California at Miss USA since Shauna Gambill in 1998. She was heavily favored by oddsmakers to win the title of Miss USA.
On June 19, 2011, she won the Miss USA title in Las Vegas, Nevada. She is the second redhead (although she is naturally blonde) and the first Miss Teen USA first runner up to win the Miss USA title. Her sister titleholders were Danielle Doty of Texas and Leila Lopes of Angola.
In July 2011, Campanella attended the Miss Teen USA 2011 competition in the Bahamas. She also traveled to Los Angeles, California to attend the premiere of Captain America: The First Avenger.
In October 2011, Campanella traveled to Chicago on behalf of the USO for their Star Spangled Banner Salute Gala. She also traveled to Boston to promote breast cancer awareness month with Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
In November 2011, Campanella traveled to the Bahamas to attend the Battle 4 Atlantis Basketball competition with several state titleholders about to compete at Miss USA 2012. In December 2011, Campanella traveled to Pensacola, Florida before traveling to Cannes and Monaco for the Five Star Diamond Awards. She traveled back to Los Angeles to attend the First Annual American Giving Awards on NBC. She then traveled to North Carolina to make an appearance at Tribute to the Troops.
In January 2012, Campanella traveled to Palm Springs, California to attend the Miss California USA 2012 pageant. She also attended the Miss Nevada USA 2012 pageant in Las Vegas later that month, where she was a special guest at the grand opening of 1Oak at The Mirage.
In March 2012, Campanella traveled to Germany with her sister titleholders for a week-long USO/Armed Forces Entertainment tour on March 9–14, 2012. In May 2012, Campanella traveled to Orlando, Florida to cohost the Runway for Hope fashion show with Mario Lopez before traveling to Las Vegas to pass on her crown. On June 3, 2012, Campanella crowned Olivia Culpo as her successor in Las Vegas, who ultimately went on to win the title of Miss Universe.
During her reign she traveled numerous trips across the United States and made many appearances throughout New York City. She also traveled to Cannes, Monaco, Brazil, Germany, Canada, and The Bahamas.
As Miss USA 2011, she went on to compete at Miss Universe 2011 in São Paulo, Brazil, from August 19–September 12, 2011 and placed in the top 16.
Campanella began modeling at age 16 in New York City and has appeared in Marie Claire, Allure, InStyle, Elle, and Women's Health magazines. She has modeled in campaigns for Sherri Hill, Aloxxi International, and Conair. Campanella has modeled in Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in New York City in 2010, 2011, and 2012. Campanella appeared in Old Navy's "Bold is the New Black" commercial in 2012. Campanella stars as a "Hotbot" in a Super Bowl 2013 commercial to introduce Kia Motors' new 2014 Forte Compact Sedan.
In January 2012, she was one of eight celebrities participating in the Food Network reality series Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off. She was eliminated in the second week of the competition.
In 2013, she posed partially nude, with three other Miss USA winners for a PETA anti-fur campaign to "put an end" to the use of fur coats as award prizes in pageantries.
She now runs a style and travel blog called "The A List."