Montville Patch’s Person of the Week Rosetta Jones was spotted a few weeks ago at a number of local events in the span of two hours including Oakdale Fire’s 50th anniversary celebration and the Polish Club’s annual cook-off.
“It’s important to attend (community events) so I can interact with people; meet them where they are,” she explained while munching a morsel at the cook-off. “I really enjoyed (the Oakdale fire house celebration) and it was very well attended. And this (referring to the cook-off) is really something. So many people and such a beautiful day and the food!”
Plus, she said, “I’m a member here,” she said referring to the Polish Club. She pulls out her membership card. “I fought for this.”
Jones, a Montville Town Councilor is a advocate for and voice of the community without “an agenda,” she says. She is an Independent on a Democratic-controlled council. She has taken her roles as liaison to the Planning and Zoning Commission very seriously in that she has ben an outspoken voice on The Villages affordable housing proposal and the controversial Traditional Cultural Boundary for the Mohegan Tribe indeed she circulated a petition and submitted opinion pieces to Patch as well as other local media. She says what she believes without fear of reprisal.
In her own words she said she hoped to “alert and inform residents” which put her in a “somewhat contentious” spot with the Tribe. “This is, unfortunately, an unintended consequence of carrying out my duties as a Town Councilor.”
Forced to move from her native Philadelphia where her color was never an issue; there she was in the majority, in Connecticut, very much in the minority. But than aver stopped her. A single mother, she worked at Electric Boat as a typist/keypunch operator until a layoff, but she seized the opportunity through EB’s continuing education program to obtain a salaried position as a Material Production Planner – “a position few women held.”
She encountered plenty of racism but that never stopped her, indeed, it may have fueled her desire to achieve the American Dream, she said. She would go on to purchase a home, “advance through the ranks” of her new profession from correction officer to warden and raise three children all of whom would go on to earn college degrees; two earning advanced degrees.
She said the most “unanticipated challenge” of her life was a devastating cancer diagnosis; after four metastasis to various organs, she’s been in remission for nine years.
Jones reflects on the lessons she has learned:
1. “We are our own best teachers."
2. "To accept responsibility; blame no one."
3. "You can learn anything you want to learn and true understanding comes from reflecting on your own experience. “