CONTACT: Alay Medina, Director | 518.434.2032
Albany, NY - Mayor Kathy Sheehan introduced the five 2022 Albany Tulip Queen finalists at a press conference in Washington Park yesterday. While only one of these remarkable young candidates will be crowned the 74th Albany Tulip Queen, all five will work together on community service and literacy advocacy initiatives as the 2022 Albany Tulip Court.
These finalists were chosen from a pool of dozens of nominees by a committee of local leaders through an extensive interview process based on their volunteer service, commitment to the local community and leadership skills. The 2022 Tulip Queen will be crowned at the Lakehouse Stage at Tulip Festival presented by Citizens on Saturday, May 7 at noon by Mayor Sheehan, 2021 Tulip Queen Ashanti’ Bishop, and Chad O’Hara of B95.5.
The finalists are:
Ashley Mayfield, Age 20, Troy
Ashley is a junior Music Industry major at The College of Saint Rose. She is the youth choir director and Mass choir co-director at her church United Ordained. She’s volunteered in the Annual Troy Back to School Bookbag Drive with the organization Team H.E.R.O., In the nursing homes Grand Rensselaer Manor and Eddy Heritage with Tamarac high school Kids Care, Went to Peru where she served a dormitorium that helps girls get an education; She also continuously volunteers in A.A.O.K.’s Annual Mother Daughter Brunch, Troy Little League’s Safe Night, and The College of Saint Rose Annual Reach out community service program. Ashley is extremely passionate about music, and cooking, she also enjoys swimming, and spending time with her family. As a member of the Tulip Court she aspires to strengthen the community through acts of service and hopes to inspire others to do so as well.
Sam Mills, Age 24, Albany
Sam Mills is a Saint Rose Alumni who graduated with a BFA in Studio Art. Since graduating, they have pursued stand-up comedy, working with local businesses organizing free open mic nights and comedy shows. Sam has lived in Albany for the past seven years and has become part of the social fabric in Center Square as a bartender at Palais Royale. In their free time they enjoy painting, reading books on history and philosophy, and karaoke! As a member of the 74th Tulip Court Sam hopes to inspire the youth to fearlessly express themselves through the freedom of expression while teaching the importance of literacy, and the power of education.
Sakthi Muthukrishnan, Age 18, Latham
Sakthi is a first-year undergraduate student at the University at Albany. She is majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, with a passion for STEM and is inclined to provide her services to the community. Sakthi has volunteered in multiple organizations such as Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital, Saratoga Children’s Museum, Saratoga Art Center and many more. She is open to opportunities and is willing to expand her skills to gain acceptance into Albany Medical College to pursue a profession in the medical field. She is also a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success, and the Presidential Honors Society. Dancing, drawing, and painting are some of her favorite activities to do during her free time. As a member of the 2022 Tulip Court, Sakthi hopes to strengthen the community through various literacy programs and design a path to connect community and culture.
Kathleen Nielsen, Age 22, Albany
Kathleen is a graduating senior at the Russell Sage College, where she majors in psychology with a minor in sociology. She has volunteered at numerous places such as a peer mentor for the youth, Girl Scouts, Lions Club, Edan’s Rose Foundation, and Vista for AmeriCorp. Kathleen will continue her education in the fall for a master’s degree in community psychology, counseling, and forensic mental health. She has the passion and drives to serve her community regardless of how busy her schedule may seem. Kathleen’s goal as a member of the 2022 Tulip Court is to spread awareness of mental health amongst the community and to hold welcoming events in all sections of Albany. She also plans to hold inviting events that will promote the LGBTQI+ community and the newcomers who establish their life here for a welcoming community for all. Kathleen will strive to have meaningful connections with whoever she comes across and to unite our community as one.
Meghan O’Neil, Age 22, Albany
Meghan is finishing up her first year of graduate school at The College of Saint Rose, working on her MS.Ed. in Communication Sciences and Disorders to become a speech-language pathologist. She is a graduate assistant for the Friday Knights Program for individuals with autism spectrum disorder at the college and works as a direct support professional and respite worker for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Throughout her time in college she was involved in Best Buddies and currently volunteers with Girls on the Run. She is extremely passionate about working with and advocating for individuals with disabilities. In her spare time, Meghan loves to run, hike, snowboard, and explore new foods and restaurants. As someone who grew up in Albany looking up to the Tulips, Meghan’s goal as a member of the Tulip Court is to be a positive role model to young people in the community and to emphasize the importance of literacy to all.
For more information on the Albany Tulip Queen & Court, visit www.albanyevents.org. Media partners for the 2022 Tulip Queen program include B95.5, WVCR and WSG.
The 74th Annual Albany Tulip Festival presented by Citizens will be held May 7 & 8, 2022. For more festival information call 518.434.2032 or visit www.albanyevents.org.
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