STORY BY Allie Doise
Yimmi Fontenot of Jeff Davis Parish couldn’t hide her excitement, gasping with disbelief as her name was called as the 2016 Louisiana Farm Bureau Queen, Saturday night during Farm Bureau's 94th Annual Convention.
After a weekend of tough interviews to quiz her knowledge of agricultural issues and the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation, the dark-haired, brown-eyed Fontenot, 18, captured the title of Queen after competing with 27 other parish queens. Fontenot, along with the other top 10 finalists, was asked how she would encourage others to become a Farm Bureau member if named queen.
“I would remind them how important agriculture is,” Fontenot replied. “Agriculture plays a role in our day-to-day lives and without it we would not be able to survive. I’d tell them that agriculture is a part of who we are and what we do in America.”
Fontenot said she is excited to see everything her reign will hold, but wants to focus her year on advocating for the Louisiana agricultural industry while educating others.
“I grew up on a farm and always knew where my food came from," she said. "As I get older, I see that there are people who have never stepped foot on a farm and have no idea where their food comes from. I am excited to get out and let people know how their food got there.”
However Fontenot was not just recognized for knowledge of agriculture and on-stage presence, but her bubbly personality as well. She also was named Miss Congeniality, the only award determined by the contestants themselves.
Fontenot is the daughter of John and Joanna Fontenot, of Laccssine. She plans to attend Blinn College in the fall, majoring in Agricultural Business. Camila Carrera, of Pointe Coupee, was named first runner-up in the contest. Second runner-up in the competition was Heidi Bieber, of Evangeline Parish.
The Louisiana Farm Bureau Queen's Contest is sponsored by the Louisiana Farm Bureau Women's Committee, and concluded the youth events in a week jam-packed with activity during the organization's annual meeting.