Mike Turzai, the former House Speaker, now has a portrait in the Speakers’ Gallery.

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Mike Turzai, the former House Speaker, now has a portrait in the Speakers’ Gallery.

Mike Turzai’s portrait now hangs on the first floor of the state Capitol alongside the portraits of nearly two dozen of his predecessors who have held the prestigious position of presiding officer of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

Turzai, the state’s 138th House speaker, held the position from 2015 until his resignation in June 2020, when he joined Peoples, the state’s largest natural gas utility company, as general counsel and vice president.

Chas Fagan, a former Pennsylvanian, painted the portrait, which was paid for with private funds.

Turzai is depicted with his hand outstretched, ready to greet whoever he comes across next.

Prior to the unveiling of the portrait on the House floor, the Allegheny County Republican was honored and remembered in an 18-minute video by former House colleagues and others for his nearly 20-year service in the chamber, including five years as majority leader before being elected speaker.

Former House Speaker Sam Smith, who held the position prior to Turzai, was one of those featured in the video.

“Having your portrait hung in the hall really cements the history of that moment in a unique way, and I know that makes this a special day for you,” Smith said.

Bill DeWeese, John Perzel, and Dennis O’Brien, all former House Speakers, were among the dignitaries in attendance.

After assuming the top leadership position in the House, current Speaker Bryan Cutler, R-Lancaster County, said he came to appreciate Turzai’s service as speaker even more.

“The job entails so much more than signing bills on the House floor or keeping an eye on the voting floor,” Cutler said.

“Mike’s skills and talents off the court are a big reason why so many people came out today to honor him.”

Cutler described how Turzai guided him as a new legislator through the legislative process and into law on a bill that was important to Cutler and his constituents.

“He was only concerned about our well-being as members as we worked on each of our policy initiatives, and my concerns were his concerns.”

So, Mike, I’d like to express my gratitude for all of your assistance during my relocation…

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