Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Rick Perry's Remarks To The Texas Women's Hall of Fame Ceremony

*Note - Gov. Perry frequently departs from prepared remarks.
Monday, October 18, 2004  •  Speech

Thank you Anita.  I am proud of the work the First Lady is doing.  Whether she is speaking out for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, working to increase child immunizations, or being a great mom to our two wonderful children, she is an ambassador of compassion, and having a tremendous impact on the lives of thousands of Texas women.

Justice O’Neill, members of the legislature, Hall of Fame inductees, friends and fellow Texans: it is my great honor to be with you all on this historic day as we pay tribute to four outstanding Texas women for their efforts to transform Texas, to improve the lives of our people, and for the inspiring example they have set for us all.

Texas is a land of legends, where great men and women of the past always seem to loom larger than life.  We cherish the rich history of our state, and we value the contributions of the men and women who have made Texas what it is today.  That sense of pride is one of the things that sets Texas apart from and above, in my opinion, all the other states.

Twenty years ago, the Governor’s Commission for Women began to honor notable women of Texas by creating the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame.  And since that time we have honored 118 women for their contributions and accomplishments in a great number of fields, from educators to entrepreneurs, astronauts to athletes.  Some have revolutionized their professions, inspired us through acts of compassion, made vast fortunes, or given away fortunes on behalf of their fellow citizens.  But the one thing they have in common is that they are all proud Texans, they have all shown their deep love for our state through their actions, and we are eternally grateful for all they have done to improve the lives of the people of Texas.  And that is true for the Hall of Fame inductees of 2004. 

On the eve of the fifth annual Texas Conference for Women, a conference dedicated to empowering the women of Texas, a young Texas woman does not have to search far for a role model.  In this very room we have four such role models, women who exemplify everything a true Texan should be: compassionate, hardworking, and dedicated to the cause of making Texas a better state, each in their own way. 

Today we honor four remarkable women: A philanthropist and cofounder of a major grocery that provides over 6,500 jobs for Texas families.  The first woman elected Commissioner of Agriculture in the state of Texas, who has made the health of our children a personal crusade.  A three-time Olympic gold medal winner, captain of the Houston Comets, and the woman who led the Texas Tech basketball team to its first and only NCAA championship.  And an immigrant who has spent a lifetime helping Texans cope with mental disabilities so that, like her, they too can live the American dream.

I could tell you more about their inspiring stories, but instead, will let them each tell you in their own words.  It is my honor to present to you the 2004 Texas Women’s Hall of Fame inductees.

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