American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, actress, author, businesswoman, and humanitarian, Dolly Parton has rejected another accolade offered to her from her home state of Tennessee.
In a statement, Parton who made her album debut in 1967 with Hello, I’m Dolly, which led to success during the remainder of the 1960s, said she asked lawmakers not to consider a bill to erect a statue of her on the grounds of the state’s Capitol. She had earlier turned down the Presidential Medal of Freedom, twice.
“I want to thank the Tennessee legislature for their consideration of a bill to erect a statue of me on the Capitol grounds,” Parton’s statement, shared on her social media pages, reads. “I am honored and humbled by their intention but I have asked the leaders of the state legislature to remove the bill from any and all consideration.”
The bill, introduced by State Rep. John Mark Windle, was passed by a state House committee February 9. However, if Parton has her way, it won’t go any further.
“Given all that is going on in the world, I don’t think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time,” Parton’s statement continued. “I hope, though, that somewhere down the road several years from now or perhaps after I’m gone if you still feel I deserve it, then I’m certain I will stand proud in our great State Capitol as a grateful Tennessean.”
Parton created The Dollywood Foundation in 1988, which focuses on literacy and education in her home county of Sevier County, Tennessee. In November, it was revealed that she helped fund research for the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Moderna.
In 1999, Parton was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. She has composed over 3,000 songs. She is also in a select group to have received at least one nomination from the Academy Awards, Grammy Awards, Tony Awards, and Emmy Awards. As an actress, she has starred in films such as 9 to 5 (1980) and The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (1982), for which she earned Golden Globe nominations for Best Actress, as well as Rhinestone (1984), Steel Magnolias (1989), Straight Talk (1992) and Joyful Noise (2012).
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