Her response was what one might expect from a young lady who conducts breast cancer research and wants to major in cellular and molecular biology. Because when San Marino’s Louise Deser Siskel was named the 101st Rose Queen on Tuesday night, it was all about humility, not hubris.
The announcement was made by 2019 Tournament of Roses President Gerald Freeny following a month-long selection process that saw representatives from 24 Pasadena area schools participate in interviews. But with six of her soon-to-be-closest friends on the stage at the Pasadena Playhouse, all eyes—and a crown featuring more than 600 cultured pearls and six carats of diamonds—were soon upon the San Marino resident, who is a senior at Sequoyah High School.
Louise is currently a member of the Debate Team and the Judicial Committee at Sequoyah High School, and participates in the YMCA Youth and Government program. Research projects she has conducted in space biology have been funded by the NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, and she is currently conducting breast cancer research at Charles Drew University in Los Angeles.
Louise enjoys reading, playing board games with her family, traveling, and laughing with friends, according to her dossier, and plans to study cellular and molecular biology at Johns Hopkins University, The University of Chicago, or Tufts University, all of which are on her list of hopefuls. This latest addition to her list of accomplishments certainly won’t hurt her chances. Louise is the daughter of Charlie Siskel and Abigail Deser; she has a brother, Simon.
The Rose Queen and Royal Court were selected based upon a combination of qualities, including public speaking ability, academic achievement, youth leadership, and community and school involvement, according to the Tournament of Roses.
2019 Rose Queen Louise and the court will attend numerous community and media functions, culminating in their appearance on the Royal Court float in the 130th Rose Parade and attending the 105th Rose Bowl football game, both on Tuesday, January 1, 2019.
Queen Louise commented on the theme of the 2019 Rose Parade, which is “Melody of Life.”
“For me, ‘The Melody of Life’ is standing at the lab bench at 7:00 a.m., singing along to show tunes,” Louise said. “It is classical music when I’m writing and 2000s hits when I’m nervous. I belt out Cole Porter verses with my grandfather and ABBA anthems with my friends. Music has an astounding capacity to bring people together and has always been an integral part of my favorite traditions and most treasured memories. Music makes the world a more forgiving and more joyful place.”
Queen Louise and her Royal Court will be the featured guests at the San Marino City Club’s November dinner meeting.
Sherry Ma, a senior at San Marino High School, is also a member of the seven-person Royal Court.