Dolly Parton has been honoured with an award for her “transformational and selfless work to improve lives across” Tennessee.

Leadership Tennessee has awarded the country music legend the inaugural Dolly Parton Excellence in Leadership Award for her charity work across the state, including her tireless work with her own Imagination Library, which gifts books to young children.

“My dream was to make as many people happy as I could in this life, and I am grateful to Leadership Tennessee and First Lady Crissy Haslam for recognizing our work done to improve the lives of all Tennesseans,” Parton said. “Even more humbling is for decades to come the future leaders of Tennessee will receive an award with the Parton family name attached to it, and for that I am truly honored and thankful.”

“Tennessee has many talented sons and daughters, but there are few who are as beloved as Dolly Parton,” added First Lady Crissy Haslam. “And while she may be most known for her music, she has undoubtedly proved to be an exemplar of leadership through her generosity, humility, inclusiveness, expertise, and passion. As a state, we are indebted to all that Dolly has done for Tennessee and its people; there is no one better suited for the very first Excellence in Leadership Award.”

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