The Defeat of Jesse James Days Committee proudly announces that 2019 DJJD Ambassador Alyssa Koktavy will be attending the Minneapolis Aquatennial Ambassador Program July 21-25 where she will vie for the title of Queen of the Lakes or one of two princesses.

According to DJJD Ambassador Chair, Julie Eddy “We support the Aquatennial Ambassador program because it has the same values that our program does which is volunteerism, leadership, community and scholarship.”

Koktavy is entering her first year in the Bachelor of Social Work Program at the University of Minnesota Duluth. She hopes to find exactly which path of social work she wants to take. One of her minors is Early Childhood Studies, as she strongly sees herself working with children.

Koktavy states, “It is my goal to provide justice to individuals, giving them that sense of security and protection and helping them become the person they envision themselves being.”

Throughout the year as a DJJD Ambassador, Koktavy volunteered at Special Olympics, Miss Amazing Pageant which helps build confidence for individuals with disabilities, Salvation Army, Laura Baker Services Assn and many others.

Koktavy has stayed busy since stating, “I’ve volunteered numerous times through Northfield Shares. I’ve spent a majority of my time volunteering at Northfield Retirement Community by spending quality time with residents, which led to my interest in becoming employed there. Additionally, through Northfield Shares, I recently had the opportunity to provide support to young students weekly by being a tutor/mentor, being an open ear and allowing them to be creative virtually. I also enjoy spending my time packing food through Feed My Starving Children and helping families build their cherished homes through Habitat for Humanity.”

Koktavy comments on her future goals, “After graduating from the University of Minnesota Duluth with a Bachelor of Social Work Degree, I’m planning on attending graduate school to earn my Master of Social Work.

Some of my hobbies include dancing, yoga, exploring the outdoors (especially in Northern Minnesota) and spending time with friends and family. I’m involved in Attitudes Dance Association and Bulldog Yoga Club at the University of Minnesota Duluth, which has allowed me to continue my passions in a new, welcoming environment.

Incorporating both short- and long-term goals, my top personal goals are to be successful and happy in life.”

Some of Koktavy’s accomplishments are becoming the fundraising coordinator her freshman year of college through the Bachelor of Social Work Student Association and holding this position through the end of her sophomore year. Now entering her junior year, she earned the position of vice president through the association. She is also proud that she made the Dean’s List for Academic Excellence several times.

Alyssa states, “Being able to represent my beautiful community of Northfield at the Minneapolis Aquatennial this summer is an exciting and memorable accomplishment of mine. As part of the Aquatennial Ambassador Candidate Program, I’m most looking forward to creating lifelong friendships with women who are just as passionate about community involvement and learning more about the Minneapolis Aquatennial’s history, all while continuing to share information about my community of Northfield’s Defeat of Jesse James Days celebration.

My favorite part of being an ambassador for my community was having the opportunity to travel to communities near and far, being “behind the scenes” of the Defeat of Jesse James Days celebration and becoming more involved with the celebration committee, and meeting so many amazing individuals along the way.”

Koktavy will be there with 43 other ladies from their communities and will participate in leadership, personal development, and other unique experiences while going through a rigorous selection process. The candidates are judged on their poise, professionalism, public speaking ability, current and future goals, education and co-curricular/extracurricular activities.

Julie Eddy states, “Alyssa will do a great job representing DJJD & Northfield as she is a strong leader with solid values. She has made so many connections through this process and is such a driven young lady, I am confident she will do well.”

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