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Photos by Niki Kelly | The Journal Gazette
Photo from Tuesday's unveiling.

Portrait of Gov. Mitch Daniels is unveiled

Second-graders at Tuesday's ceremony ask Daniels for autographs.
Daniels spoke Tuesday about the process of sitting for a portrait.

INDIANAPOLIS – Gov. Mitch Daniels took time Tuesday to reflect on his eight-year tenure during the unveiling of his official governor’s portrait.

He started by jokingly apologizing to his staff for being a “royal pain in the backside” during the portrait process but finished nearly in tears.

Daniels referred to the hundreds of fine colleagues in his administration who should also be in the photo and his effort to leave a lean, clean government.

“People have a right to expect that the people’s business is being done with integrity,” he said while his voice cracked and tears welled in his eyes.

He quoted a number of famous leaders and said he would like to be remembered as Theodore Roosevelt was by a school child – “he was a fulfiller of good intentions.”

The new oil painting is the 53rd in the governor’s portrait collection.

In it, Daniels is leaning against a chair in a blue shirt and paisley tie, holding a pen. He is not wearing a suit jacket as other governors have.

The portrait was done by artist Richard Halstead, a Lafayette native.

According to state guidelines, the portrait is to be approximately 42 inches by 32 inches in size and an oil or acrylic work. Historically, the portrait of the most immediate past governor is displayed in the lobby of the governor’s state house office.