King and Queen Zulu talk about the joy of reigning as carnival

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Zulu King Brent D. Washington Sr. and his wife, Queen Troye Madison-Washington, are honored to be Carnival royalty.

Washington has been a member of the krewe for 27 years.

"I was more interested on the administrative side of Zulu," said King Zulu.

In 2013, he got to serve as Zulu character Big Shot.

"I had several other positions in the organization, so I said the only thing left for me to do is to be king," said Washington.

But with the Krewe of Zulu, ascending to king is not automatic. It takes expensive campaigning - lots of it.

"It was a hard and gruesome election, but I was able to prevail," said the king.

The king has an MBA and is chief financial officer at Edgar P. Harney Charter Schools. He also owns an accounting and management consulting firm. The king is very proud that as an undergrad he played with the world-renowned Southern University Marching Band.

Queen Zulu earned a B.A. as well as a master's degree from Xavier University of Louisiana. She is an administrator at Lafayette Academy in New Orleans.

She told FOX 8 News that she relishes the royal treatment afforded her as the queen and she said that she even had a shot at the title decades ago.

"I was a maid in 1978, which was 40 years ago. And at that time there was a little conflict with the queen, so they selected a queen from the maids on that night, so for a split second I thought I could have been queen, so it took me 40 years to get there."

She said this Mardi Gras will be surreal after growing up on Jackson Avenue where Zulu steps off as the first parade of the day each Fat Tuesday.

"I was that little girl who stood on the sideline looking at the queen pass and the parade pass and now that's me," stated the queen.

And with two successful sons, one of whom plays basketball for the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, the royal pair hopes children along the parade route will dream big.

"At one point in their life they can also be in my shoes," said the king.

"Stay the course, dreams can happen," added the queen.

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