Senior Kaya Rifenberg-Stempel Named Albany Tulip Queen

Senior Kaya Rifenberg-Stempel Named Albany Tulip Queen

Kaya Rifenberg-Stempel

Kaya Rifenberg-Stempel is crowned 2020 Tulip Queen in Washington Park. Photo: BDL Photography

ALBANY, N.Y. — On Saturday, July 18th, Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan introduced the 2020 Albany Tulip Queen and her four court members at a press conference in Washington Park. There, Rockefeller College senior Kaya Rifenberg-Stempel was chosen as the 72nd Albany Tulip Queen. Throughout the next year, she will work with her four court members on community service and literacy advocacy initiatives.

A Capital Region tradition since the 1940s, the Tulip Queen and her four Tulip Court members are chosen by a committee of local leaders through an extensive interview process based on their volunteer service, commitment to the local community, and leadership skills. 

Tulip Queen:

Kaya Rifenberg-Stempel, 19, of Latham is a senior at the University at Albany. Majoring in political science and French, Kaya enjoys learning about foreign languages and cultures and hopes to someday get involved in international politics as a foreign ambassador. A lifelong Albany County resident and Girl Scout, she is a co-founder of Building a Better Colonie — an organization that seeks to encourage youth participation in local politics. Kaya is also a devoted wildlife advocate and is a member of the Tau Sigma transfer honor society and the Pi Delta Phi French Honor Society. In her free time, she loves to read, write, sketch, and play musical instruments. Above all, she values time with her family, especially her younger brothers. As a member of the 2020 Tulip Court, Kaya hopes to raise support for wildlife conservation projects and to spread knowledge about music, art, and foreign languages throughout Albany.

As the Tulip Queen, Kaya will be awarded a $5,000 scholarship and each court member will receive a $1,500 scholarship award after completing the year-long program.

Tulip Court Members:

Kimberly Guzman-Reyes, 23, Albany, Maria College (general studies)
Samantha Peck, 21, Albany, University at Albany (psychology)
Maya Wilson, 21, Latham, Hudson Valley Community College (human services)
Karina Wojnar, 23, Albany, Siena (interdisciplinary studies)