Pat Fordice

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Patricia Owens "Pat" Fordice (November 27, 1935 – July 12, 2007) was the First Lady of Mississippi from 1992 until 1999 as the wife of Governor Kirk Fordice. They divorced, after forty-four years of marriage on December 9, 1999.

She was referred to as the "Eternal First Lady" and received numerous awards for her activities both during her husband's tenure as governor and after it ended. The Mississippi State Legislature awarded her a formal recognition during the 1999 Regular Session.[1]

Following the divorce her ex-husband Kirk remarried in 2000 only to divorce in 2003. Kirk then became ill with cancer shortly after and Pat was at his side when he died at the age of 70 in 2004.

In November 2005, Pat Fordice resigned as the city of Jackson's interim head of Human and Cultural Services. At the time, Fordice said the full-time job was more demanding than she believed she could handle. Pat Fordice was also a co-host of the program "Woman to Woman" with Juanita Sims Doty on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. She also appeared in a series of commercials for Keep Mississippi Beautiful and the Mississippi Department of Transportation as part of its anti-littering campaign.

Pat Fordice died at the age of seventy-one of cancer in Jackson.


  • "Pat Fordice served as Mississippi's first lady with grace and refinement. Her unwavering strength encouraged Mississippians to persevere during difficult circumstances. Regal yet approachable, she possessed a natural Southern elegance that transcended her term and endeared her to our hearts." (U.S. Rep. Chip Pickering;