Schaefer Portrait Challenge III (2009)
Alberta de Jetley, Farmer
One of 53 portraits selected from across the state for the Third Schaefer Portrait Challenge in 2009. The Schaefer Portrait Challenge will be at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center (January - February) and The Contemporary Museum at First Hawaiian Center, Honolulu (May-September).
"Alberta de Jetley, Farmer"
Alberta De Jetley is a farmer whose roots tap down deeply into the aina of three islands: Moloka’i , where she was born; Lana’i, where she grew up under the Jacaranda trees at Koele; and Maui, where she raised her own family. After a career in the hotel industry, Alberta switched gears and became a writer. Over the years, her highly engaging feature articles have appeared in numerous publications. She is on the board of several non-profit organizations in our community, and can always be counted on to lend a helping hand. She inspires others through a mix of enthusiasm, compassion and a no-nonsense approach to improving life on Lanai.
I decided to portray Alberta to honor her selfless service to our community, and her vision and dedicated work in developing Lanai’s only commercial farm. On her 18-acre farm, apple bananas and vegetables grow profusely. While walking with Alberta through the fields she has nurtured so lovingly, I noticed bees buzzing around the banana blossoms. “We keep the blossoms on the stalks longer than most people, because it helps the bees”, she told me. At that moment, it dawned on me that Alberta is Lanai’s version of a tireless “worker bee”, putting the needs of the community ahead of her own to make Lana’i a better place. If you want to get something done, the old saying goes, ask a busy person to do it. Few are as busy or do as much for Lana’i as Alberta de Jetley.
Photo Caption: Alberta de Jetley and Mike Carroll with portrait "Alberta de Jetley, Farmer". Shaefer Portrait Challenge 2009, Maui Arts & Cultural Center.