Katherine Renee "Kate" Shindle is an American actress, singer, dancer, and AIDS activist. She came to fame as Miss America 1998, where she represented the state of Illinois as Miss Illinois 1997. She was attending Northwestern University at the time, though she was raised in Moorestown Township in southern New Jersey and graduated from the Bishop Eustace Preparatory School. She graduated from Northwestern University in 1999 with a bachelor's degree in theatre. In 2007, she was cast in the Broadway musical, Legally Blonde, based on the 2001 Reese Witherspoon film, playing the role of Vivienne through the musical's entire Broadway run.