Trevor Parsons, an incoming senior at Cumberland County High School, has been selected as a senator for American Legion Boys Nation in the Washington, D.C. area, July 19-26.
Boys Nation is an annual American Legion program that includes civic training, leadership development and a focus on Americanism. Parsons was previously elected governor of Tennessee Boys State, which had roughly 440 participants. Parsons will be joined by Amrit Pagar of Hixson High School in representing Tennessee at Boys Nation.
At Cumberland County High School, Parsons, a resident of Crossville, has participated in basketball, football and track.
During their eight days at Boys Nation, 100 senators (two from each state with the exception of Hawaii and the District of Columbia) will learn from a hands-on approach how the U.S. Senate and the federal government function. Young men are divided into two political parties, the Federalists and the Nationalists, each of which conducts a party convention, sets a platform and nominates members for elected offices, including Boys Nation president, vice president and party leaders. Each senator will also write, introduce and debate a bill of his choosing before an appropriate Senate committee, and if successful at that level the legislation will be voted on by the whole Senate. Bills passing the Senate are later signed or vetoed by the Boys Nation president.
The young men will also have an opportunity to tour the National Mall, including the Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Wall and Korean War Memorial. They will also present a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery, see the Iwo Jima Memorial and visit Capitol Hill for meetings with their state’s U.S. senators. They may have the opportunity to visit the White House as well. In addition, delegates will attend a dinner at a nearby Legion post hosted by National Commander Brett Reistad of Virginia.
This year’s crop of Boys Nation senators represent the finest of nearly 20,000 incoming seniors who attended the 50 annual Boys State programs. Famous Boys Nation alumni include former President Bill Clinton, actor Donal Logue, Govs. Chris Christie and Scott Walker, and Sens. Mike Lee and Tom Cotton. Notable Boys State alumni include Tom Brokaw, Michael Jordan, Rush Limbaugh, Jon Bon Jovi, Garth Brooks, Neil Armstrong, Roger Ebert and Justice Samuel Alito.