AUGUST 8, 2022
Jefferson City — Today, during an event at the Governor's Mansion, Governor Mike Parson and First Lady Teresa Parson unveiled the First Lady's official portrait that will join 28 other portraits of Missouri First Ladies displayed on the first floor of the Governor's Mansion.
"This portrait isn't just about me, but rather about our story, our family, and our love for the State of Missouri. My hope is that all Missourians that have the opportunity to visit the People’s House will feel welcome as they enter this remarkable home," First Lady Teresa Parson said. "It's a privilege to have my portrait join so many wonderful women and past First Ladies who served the people of Missouri with unwavering pride and dignified grace. It is an honor to serve as the First Lady of our great state."
"I couldn't be prouder of the First Lady for her service to the people of Missouri. Being the spouse of an elected official isn't easy, but Teresa wakes up every day with a full heart, patriotic spirit, and passion to serve," Governor Parson said. "I thank God each day for allowing me to do life with her. It means so much that Missourians will be able to look at this portrait and be reminded of what an exceptional wife, mother, grandmother, businesswoman, and advocate they have serving as their First Lady. My family and I are beyond blessed to have Teresa in our lives, and we're so happy to be able to share her extraordinary character and compassion with the people of Missouri."
The portrait was painted by Lisa Ober of St. Louis, Missouri. The artist consulted with the First Lady to make certain the composition of the painting and the elements included represent what the First Lady wishes to convey about her tenure and service. The resulting portrait is an original hand-painted oil painting on canvas which measures 46" X 36", unframed.
The portrait depicts the First Lady opening the door to the Governor’s Mansion, which she has coined “The People’s House," and welcoming visitors inside. There are also other hidden objects of significance within the piece:
- "150" on the door lock for 150 years of the Governor's Mansion;
- "200" in the fence for 200 years of Missouri statehood;
- The royal blue dress representing Bolivar school's colors, the Governor and First Lady's hometown;
- "1985" on the door handle for when the Governor and First Lady were married;
- SCH & KLP initials of the Governor and First Lady's children reflected off the front door;
- "6" in the fence for the six grandchildren the Governor and First Lady share;
- 40 pearls on her necklace representing her 40 years in the banking industry; and
- "57" in the tree branch as Governor Parson is Missouri’s 57th Governor.
First Lady Parson brings to her role the experience of being a mother, grandmother, businesswoman, volunteer, and advocate. After working 40 years in the banking industry, the First Lady retired and continued serving her community. She has a special place in her heart for children and supports initiatives focused on them.
The portrait was presented to the First Lady by Sue Heckart of Sedalia, Missouri. The portrait was framed by the Gary R. Lucy Gallery in Washington, Missouri.
Photos from today's portrait unveiling will be available on Governor Parson's Flickr page.