If We're Gonna Have An Older President, Can It At Least Be Dolly Parton?

Parton For America, 2024.

dolly parton DFree | Shutterstock, photovs, Gutzemberg | Canva

The US is gearing up for another election cycle, culminating in our country voting for the next president in 2024. The candidates placed before us by the Republican and Democratic parties aren't anyone new, as Donald Trump and Joe Biden are both once again bidding for the role. 

No matter where along the political spectrum your politics lie, one fact can be agreed upon — Biden, 80, and Trump, 77 are no spring chickens. Most people seem resigned to electing a much older man, yet many have argued the need for younger candidates, which opens up the question of who else might win the presidency. 


If we’re committed to having an older president, it should at least be Dolly Parton.

For those of you saying that Parton is an odd choice for president, hear me out. The 77-year-old singer is more than a musician. She’s a national icon. 

Her life story is what the myth of the American Dream is based on. Parton grew up amidst the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. She was the 4th of 12 children, born to a farmer father and homemaker mother, raised in a one-room cabin, with no electricity or running water. She first performed at the Grand Ole Opry at age 13, leaping into a music career after recording her first album in 1967.


Parton’s contributions to the American cultural landscape have been recognized by way of multiple awards. She’s won 12 Grammys. In 2004, she received the Living Legend Award from the Library of Congress; in 2005, she was awarded the National Medal of Arts, which is the highest honor given to artists by the US government. One year after that, she was given Kennedy Center Honors, cementing the celebration of her accomplishments. 

During her decades-long career, Parton has crossed from country to pop and back, highlighting her versatility and wide appeal.

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Dolly Parton's icon status and presidential viability are due to her roles as a successful businesswoman and generous philanthropist.

Parton’s national influence began in 1986, with the establishment of Dollywood in her home county in Tennessee. The amusement park provided a local economy where there had previously been meager options for employment. In 1988, Parton created the Dollywood Foundation, and her philanthropic activity absolutely exploded. Parton provides scholarships for college students from Sevier County. She’s extended medical care to the Tennessee community by funding hospitals and founding the Dolly Parton Center for Women’s Services. 


She famously established the Imagination Library in 1995, which provides one free book a month to children from birth until age five. Through those efforts, Parton has distributed 178 million books in the US and abroad.

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Parton’s philanthropy takes the form of direct action. She’s involved in everything from healthcare to literacy to helping families rebuild after devastating environmental disasters. She donated $1000 a month for six months to people who’d lost their homes to wildfires in the Great Smoky Mountains in 2016.

Parton is estimated to have a net worth of $375 million dollars, which she readily shares with the many American citizens in need of support. It could even be said that Parton saved the lives of millions of people around the world after she pledged $1 million to fund research for the Covid-19 vaccine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. 


Despite her massive wealth and incredible philanthropic generosity, Parton remains humble and grounded, both personality traits a president should have.

In 2022, Parton accepted the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy; during her acceptance speech, she proclaimed, “I just give from my heart. I never know what I'm going to do or why I'm gonna do it. I just see a need and if I can fill it, then I will."


Those are the words of true presidential material. Parton pledges to help those who need it, with no premeditated agenda, just one of many factors that would make her an outstanding leader of the United States. As our nation moves through turmoil, upheaval, and collective trauma, there’s no one better than Parton to take the helm and lead us toward healing.

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Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers celebrity gossip, pop culture analysis and all things to do with the entertainment industry.