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Louisiana Senior America

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MS LOUISIANA SENIOR AMERICA 2018,
DONNA PERKINS

Ms. LOUISIANA, Donna Perkins CONGRATULATIONS to DONNA PERKINS, Ms. Louisiana 2018!

As Donna tells it, “I am a very lucky woman. At five-days-old, a wonderful Christian couple adopted me. Because of their nurturing, they opened the world of dance and volunteering to me at the age of three. To this day, dancing has been my life. It was a proud day when I opened my own studio – Perkins Just Dance. I teach all kinds of dancing to young and old with great satisfaction. The most gratifying group I have been teaching for the last 15 years and perhaps my favorite activity is my founding and directing the Mentally Challenged and Senior Citizen Praise and Worship Dance Team. They perform whenever asked and love to do it.

I  must admit my favorite kind of dance and music is country western. I always wanted to marry a cowboy – and I did. Brian, a bucking-bronco rodeo cowboy, and I have been married for 42 years and we have one son and four granddaughters. Not only is Brian a great horseman, he is a fantastic dancer. We compete often and have won the Show Case World Championship in Couples Country Western dance and the Super Star division in the ACDA. We hold titles in the United States, Europe, and Canada.

There was a wonderful turn in my life ten years ago when my three-week-old granddaughter came to us as a gift. Dancing is not her thing, but rodeoing is. She has been winning state awards under her “Poppy’s” watchful eye. Although I grew up riding horses on my parents’ farm, I never was in a rodeo. But now, I am barrel racing with my granddaughter and having the time of my life being a senior rodeo queen! We travel the Southeast to compete in rodeos. As well as having my local dance classes, I have traveled all over the United States teaching private lessons and conducting workshops. I have mentored and coached young girls for pageants and am the director of the Pearl River County Rodeo Queen pageant.

Volunteering is also a big part of my life. For the past fifteen years, I have worked with the Special Olympics and the Relay for Life. Most recently, I have competed for the Dancing with the Relay Stars and my partner and I were the first Mississippi “Mirror Ball” winners. My mentally challenged and senior citizen dancers perform for nursing homes and city events. One of my favorite volunteer activities is performing with my father-in-law, John Perkins, lead singer from the Crew Cuts which was famous for “Earth Angel” and “Sh-Boom Sh-Boom.” I was honored to receive the 2007 National Mrs. United States Community Service Award.

Since Laney, my granddaughter, has been with me these last ten years, I feel like I am living my life all over again. I am, once again, nurturing like a mother. I rodeo, I volunteer, and I am Ms. Louisiana Senior America and the love of my life, my cowboy husband Brian is with me all the way.”

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