Dolly Parton Asks Tennessee Not to Build Statue of Her Likeness on Capitol Grounds

After a Tennessee lawmaker filed a bill proposing the building of a Dolly Parton statue on the grounds of the State Capitol, Parton is politely turning the suggestion down. In a statement shared to her social media accounts on Thursday, Feb. 18. "I want to thank the Tennessee legislature for their consideration of a bill to erect a statue of me on the Capitol grounds," she wrote.

"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." Parton explained, "given all that is going on in the world, I don't think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time." The country icon added that she hopes 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 Captiol as a grateful Tennessean." She concluded, "In the meantime, I'll continue to try to do good work to make this great state proud."

Rep. John Windle filed the bill in question on Wednesday, Jan. 13. "At this point in history, is there a better example, not just in America but in the world, of a leader that is a kind, decent, passionate human being?" Windle said at the time. "[She's] a passionate person who loves everyone, and everyone loves her." The proposed statue would have faced Nashville's historic Ryman Auditorium.

Though she's been working virtually, Parton has had a notable past 12 months. Within the past year, the 75-year-old has released a holiday album, a new book and a Netflix film, gave numerous remote performances, launched a fragrance and donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University, funding that was used to help develop the Moderna vaccine. During a recent virtual interview on Lorraine, Parton shared that she will "probably get around" to finding time to film a guest appearance on the Netflix show Grace and Frankie, which would reunite her with her 9 to 5 co-stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin.

"I work 365 (days a year). I’m always working 5 to 9, 9 to 5. I work all hours of the night and day," Parton recently told the Associated Press. "Whatever you need to do, you gotta get it done, however many hours it takes."