DCC Alumni Spotlight – Jayne Phillips
Jayne Phillip’s journey to becoming a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader was different from most individuals who have fulfilled the same dream. She had a very successful modeling career growing up, after signing with an agency in New Orleans at the age of 14. She also appeared in Aerosmith’s music video for “Rag Doll” filmed on Bourbon Street in 1988. She always aspired to be a dancer, but never had any formal dance training. She explained to me that she was unable to take dance classes growing up, so she taught herself how to dance. Her hard work led her to having a successful professional dance and cheerleading career! Jayne was no stranger to the stadium lights of the NFL. Before she earned her boots and stars, Jayne grew up in New Orleans where she performed as one of the original New Orleans Saintsations Cheerleaders. She cheered for the Saints from 1987 to 1994, beginning at the age of 19.
Jayne had finished her degree in Communications and wanted have new adventures outside of New Orleans. She picked the city of Dallas to relocate to and said to herself, “Okay now, maybe I can try out for the cheerleaders too!” She expressed to me that she was really nervous to move away from New Orleans because it was her first time moving away from home. However, Jayne saw this move as an exciting opportunity and adventure. She was 28 years old and said that she did not tell hardly anyone that she was auditioning for the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders because she really wanted to focus in on her goal without having any sort of distraction. She said, “I wanted to prepare myself mentally and physically for it.” She said that she worked out around 3 hours a day for the audition and actually had a professional boxer help train her. She said, “I knew that if I was trying out, I had to give it 150%. I had to get in really good shape.” When she tried out for DCC, she said her experience was wonderful and very different from her previous NFL Cheerleading auditions. She said that making the team was simply amazing. The DCC traveled to Toronto in 1995 and performed in the Blue Jays Stadium for the NFL American Bowl during preseason. Super Bowl XXX brought an end to Jayne’s rookie season when the Dallas Cowboys defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 27-17. Also, the Cheerleaders appeared on Jay Leno, David Letterman, and many other shows that year. In regards to her year as a DCC, she said, “It was full of amazing, lifelong memories. The girls were just class act girls with big hearts.” She said that she still will get together with a few of her teammates and it always excites her to see them. She continually expressed to me how grateful she is for the sisterhood of this organization.
After the season had finished, Jayne said that she became very homesick and made the decision to move back to New Orleans. She expressed to me that the toughest part about her rookie season was being away from her family. She thought about trying out for a 2nd season, but became very involved in the Car Show Circuit with an agency in Michigan as a Narrator Car Show Specialist with Jaguar and General Motors. She did this for 5 years until September 11, 2001 hit. After our Nation’s great tragedy, she was no longer able to travel because they were no longer flying Show Models out like they had done previously. She became a member of the Screen Actors Guild after her time as a DCC and appeared in numerous films, commercials, modeling print work, fashion shows, and modeling across the United States.
When I asked Jayne what advice she would give to someone who dreams of becoming a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader, she said, “Go for it because no one is going to do it for you. You have to prepare mentally, prepare physically, and your heart has to be in it. You have to focus without distractions.” She also added, “If you are going to do something in life, do it to the fullest.” When I asked Jayne what lasting impact she wanted to leave on DCC and the NFL, she said, “Being a caring individual, giving back, and giving hope to others by telling them that they can reach those dreams and reach those goals. Whatever obstacles you may have, there is a way to reach your goals. Not everyone has been handed the same set of cards in life, but if you want something, you will figure it out with hard work.”
After Jayne’s time with the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, she endured many wonderful moments and overcame great obstacles. After her time traveling with the Car Show Circuit, unfortunately, she lost her home and most of her belongings (including her DCC pinky ring) during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. She decided to go to nursing school in her early 40s and eventually became a Registered Nurse. She is currently working as an RN, while working on her Masters degree. She said that her mother is her biggest advocate and motivates her to be beyond the best she can be. Jayne credits her mother with setting examples in making goals in education and excelling at them, for herself and others.
Jayne has one son, who is now 13 years old named James Vincent. She told me that James is her whole world! She said, “You never know where your life’s adventures are going to lead. We all have different chapters in our book. The main thing is to stay positive, have hope, and if you really want something, you are not going to get it without hard work.” Jayne Phillips is an incredible individual who truly represented the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders with confidence and grace. It was an honor to learn about her life and her amazing journey with this organization.