A dream come true
Queen Cotton LXIII Haley Jett
By: TONY MARKS
Sixty-three young ladies have worn the title of Queen Cotton during the time of the Louisiana Cotton Festival. For the latest of which, the title is a dream come true.
“Of course having my number called to be Queen Cotton was the most memorable day,” exclaimed Queen Cotton LXIII Haley Jett. “Being able to represent the Cotton Festival in Washington D.C. and at Queen of Queens provided me with some incredible memories, but being able to witness and be the Queen during the rebirth of the Tee Cotton Bowl was the true highlight of my year.”
“My favorite memory made during D.C. Mardi Gras was meeting up with my NSU Demon Family,” she continued. “I was unable to bring any family members to D.C., so finding NSU’s past president Dr. Jim Henderson and current NSU president Dr. Chris Maggio and their families there was so comforting. The highlight of that trip was when Dr. Chris Maggio broke through the barricades to take a picture with me during my formal presentation!”
Jett is the 20-year-old daughter of John and Pam Jett and the granddaughter of Jerry and Linda Spoor and Vera Jett. She is a junior at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches where she is majoring in Biology/Pre-medicine. She is an active member of Phi Mu Sorority, Golden Key International Honor Society, Volunteer coordinator of Blue Key Honor Society, Historian of Beta Beta Beta Biology Honor Society, and Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society. After her course work, she plans on becoming a pediatrician.
While Jett is involved in Greek life and other professional societies, she has found time to well represent the Louisiana Cotton Festival and the City of Ville Platte. “I attended about 45 events throughout this year,” she said. Crawfish racing in Breaux Bridge and picking the sweetest strawberries in Ponchatoula were two of my favorite events!”
“Being Louisiana Queen Cotton LXIII has shown me Louisiana in a way I didn’t know was possible,” she added. “I have seen our strong traditions, our incredible industries and commodities, and the importance of preserving our culture and heritage. I have also been able to make connections throughout the state and country that will be beneficial to my future, and that would not have been possible without this title.”
The honor of being Queen Cotton has taught Jett some valuable lessons going into medical school. “I have learned that I am very good at time management. Through all of the events and traveling of this year, I also kept a 4.0 GPA, stayed involved in various organizations, worked several jobs, did parasite research through NSU’s Biology Department, and I have been planning my wedding! I have learned that Ville Platte has an incredible sense of community and is full of kindhearted people!”
While reflecting on her reign coming to an end, Jett shared some insights on future young ladies who will wear the title of Queen Cotton. “I think that being a good Queen requires you to be humble, respectful, and kind. You have to always be a good role model because there are always sweet little eyes watching you. Take your time and enjoy every second. Don’t stress out about small details because this is the chance of a lifetime! Keep a smile on your face through the crown induced headaches!”
Jett also expressed her gratitude to the litany of people who has made her reign possible. “First, I would like to thank God for allowing me this opportunity and keeping me safe throughout all of the traveling this year.”
“I want to thank the Louisiana Cotton Festival Board and everyone who puts in time to make this festival what it is. I have to say a special thank you to Mrs. Kelli Buller, Sarah and Sadie, Mrs. Peggy, and Katelyn Yates for being my second family and treating me like a true queen! I want to thank my Rhinestone sisters for taking me in and giving me such incredible memories. Last, but definitely not least, I want to thank my incredible parents for their immense support both financially and emotionally!”