Kris Allen was the surprise winner of the American Idol 8th Season. Everyone, including Allen himself, expected that Nick Lambert would take the crown and the million dollar record contract attached to it.
His "boy next door" image apparently resonated with the 100 million plus votes that came in from across America.
He is recently married to wife Katy who was often on hand throughout the season to cheer him on. Allen also was active in various Christian ministry before joining the Idol season including serving as a Worship Leader at New Life Church in Maumelle, AR and going on short term mission trips to countries such as South Africa and Thailand.
There is some sense that Kris Allen won the so-called "Christian vote" on the show. On the next to the last show when there were three contestants including Allen, Lambert, and Danny Gokey, only 1 million out of 88 million votes separated Allen and Lambert. Gokey was very similar to Allen in that he was a music minister prior to joining American Idol. It is likely to think that many of the Gokey votes shifted to Allen in the show's finale.
Nick Lambert, on the other hand was a flashy rocker who sported black fingernail polish on the show. He preferred artists such as Led Zepplin over Allen's frequent choice of Kayne West.
While Kris Allen is guaranteed the music contract by virtue of being the winner of the show, Lambert will probably be signing his own contract quite shortly. The runner up has become more successful than the winner in many seasons as was the case of Clay Aiken and David Archuleta.