GMF Timeline Highlights in Honor of its 50th Anniversary in 2022


First Lady Nancy Evan credits the Mansion Dining Room chandelier, purchased and donated by the Washington State Federation of Republican Women, as the impetus for the idea of improving the Governor’s Mansion furnishings into a more cohesive and aesthetic whole.


The Foundation for the Preservation of the Mansion (FPM) was incorporated from CRISP in order to focus solely on the Governor’s Mansion. First Officers were Laurene Gandy (Mrs. Joseph E.), Anne Todd (Mrs. Charles H.), Edith Williams (Mrs. Andrew M. Williams), Mrs. Raymond Enloe, Margaret Gose (Mrs. Tom Gose), and Eva Tollefson (Mrs. Thor Tollefson).

First Lady Nancy Evans with Laurene Gandy, 1972. GMF Archives


Noted Seattle Interior Designer, Jean Jongeward, Washington State District Chapter, AIA, provided a Master Design for the Mansion Interior to include 18th and 19th century antiques that referenced the Georgian Revival Design of the 1908 Mansion.

First Lady Nancy Evans in the dining room with the Edwin Chapman Mural.  GMF Archives


“Mansion Month” in October, organized by the Foundation for the Preservation of the  Mansion and chaired by Dorothy Beaupre of Seattle, involved groups in 35 communities around the state.  These groups raised over $100,000 for Mansion furnishings at 70 events that included teas, dinners, cocktail parties and programs.


Virginia Talcott organized the Docent Program for the Governor’s Mansion at the request of Nancy Evans.

Virginia Alderson Talcott (1917-2011) image.

Docent members Linda Langberg, BJ Lutz, Joan Aspaas and Rita Niesen. GMF Image.


Clayton and Georgia Farrington donated 1000 books for the GMF Library.

Mansion Library, 1970s. GMF Archives.


President Ginny Kitchell (1981-1984) formed the Art Committee, chaired by Diana Neely who purchased the first permanent pieces of the Mansion Art Collection: two Audubon bird prints.

Diana Neely. WSHS Governor’s Mansion Foundation “Voices of the Mansion,” Oral History Project.


The name “Foundation for the Preservation of the Mansion” changed to “Governor’s Mansion Foundation” (GMF).


The Art Committee organized the first Gallery Exhibit which featured noted Northwest artist Kenneth Callahan with his works from the Robert Sarkis Collection.


GMF created the Endowment Fund with an original goal of $300,000 as part of the State Centennial. Lynn Brunton was the Chairman.

Lynn Brunton.  WSHS Governor’s Mansion Foundation “Voices of the Mansion,” Oral History Project.


Dr. Sheila Fay and Jenny Edwards started Chamber Concerts at the Mansion to raise funds to pay for the restoration and maintenance of the Mansion’s grand pianos.

Dr. Sheila Fay and Jenny Edwards with Governor Booth Gardner. WSHS Governor’s Mansion Foundation “Voices of the Mansion,” Oral History Project. 


GMF acquired a notable portrait of George Washington by well-known 18th century artist, Rembrandt Peale, through the leadership of Tom and Ann Barwick, in a fundraising effort spearheaded by GMF Art Committee Chair, Beverly Criley Graham. The unveiling of the portrait program is available here.

Beverly Criley Graham with the Peale Portrait. GMF Image.


Mansion Centennial Events, with overall Chairman Laurie Maricle, included an August 1, 2008  Centennial Garden Party, October, 2008 Luncheon and a May 2009 Centennial Tea and Vintage Fashion Show.

Governor Chris Gregoire and First Gentleman Mike Gregoire at the Centennial Garden Party Event. Washington State image.

Governor Chris Gregoire with Cententennial Attendees.  Washington State image. To view the Centennial Tea and Fashion Show click here:

The Centennial Garden Party video is available here


Shelley Carr, along with other volunteers, completed and published the “Voices of the Mansion” Oral History Project. Shelley Carr also wrote the book, “A Public Mansion, A Private Home,” about the Mansion. View the Oral Histories here


GMF commemorated its 40th Anniversary with special events. View the program here


GMF redecorated the upstairs guest bedrooms with new furnishings and in 2018-2019 GMF installed new wallpaper and upholstery in the upstairs guest rooms.


GMF hosted a special “First Spouses” program. The video is available here

L-R First Ladies Nancy Evans and Jean Gardner, Diane Lowry Oakes, First Gentleman Mike Gregoire and First Lady Trudi Inslee. GMF image.

2016 & 2018

GMF hosted two wine socials to benefit the Governor’s Mansion Foundation.

Wine Social Attendees


GMF commemorated the USS Olympia Presentation Silver in the Mansion with a special program viewable here

L-R Dawna Donohue, Ann Olson, Capt. Alan Schrader, Retired Washington Supreme Court Chief Justice Gerry Alexander. GMF image.


GMF Docents portrayed First Ladies in special Women’s History Month tours.  View the video “>here.

Front L-R Ann Olson, Joan Houchen, Dawna Donohue, Brim Smith.  Back L-R Elisabeth Schafer, Shanna Stevenson, Donna Doyle and Judy Henderson. GMF image.


Spearheaded by GMF, the Mansion became a part of the National Votes for Women Trail for its associations with the Women’s Suffrage Movement in Washington State.

Women’s Suffrage History at the Mansion video is available here

2020- September, 2022

The Mansion closed to the public due to the COVID pandemic.


GMF purchased two lithographs by noted Black artist Jacob Lawrence and a mixed media collage on canvas by Japanese artist Paul Horiuchi, which were installed in 2022.

“Artist in Studio,” by Jacob Lawrence.

“Tools, 1977” by Jacob Lawrence.

“Prelude to Winter,” by Paul Horiuchi.


GMF 50th Anniversary Committee commissioned works by Leo Adams, Yakama Artist called “Reservation View,” and Coastal Salish Native American carvers Andy and Ruth Wilbur- Peterson.  Both artworks were installed in 2022.

“Circle of Life and Change,” by Andy and Ruth Wilbur-Peterson

“View from the Reservation,” by Leo Adams (pictured).

Learn more about the Petersons and their Mansion artwork here

Learn about Leo Adams and his art here. This program was funded in part by a 2022 Humanities Washington Opportunity Grant.


GMF hosted a special online program about the Peale Portrait by Dr. Susan Casteras which can be seen here:


GMF Hosted a 50th Anniversary Commemorative Event on
September 9, 2022 featuring remarks by former Governor Dan Evans and First
Lady Nancy Evans. View the video here

Governor Dan Evans with 50th Anniversary Event Chair
Laurie Maricle.

First Lady Nancy Evans with 2022-2024 GMF President Lorraine Hamilton.