Jim Kreider, former Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives and executive director of the Missouri Retired Teachers Association, put his Pince-nez spectacles back on for a special event at the Missouri River Regional Library in Jefferson City.
“An Evening with Theodore Roosevelt” was hosted by the Jefferson City library and the Historic City of Jefferson. Kreider was dressed as Roosevelt with period costume and accessories.
Kreider considers Roosevelt a political mentor and inspiration.
“His desire to lead the strenuous life is the way I have led mine [by] working hard and getting involved,” Kreider said, adding he read Roosevelt’s “Doer of Deeds, It Is Not The Critic That Counts” speech every day when he served in the Missouri House.
“I read it every day as inspiration so I could accept the criticism of being in office and ruling from the Chair during the House debate as Pro Tem,” he said.
Kreider maintains he and Roosevelt are “near matches” in political philosophies and appearances. He first decided to dress up as Roosevelt when people began to point out the two looked alike.
“It is a good time and a chance to bring back one of America’s greatest public servants and promote the progressive agenda once again.”
“I purchased a pair of Pince-nez glasses, bought a 1990s wool sack suit, an old rough black hat, a pocket watch, and went out into Retired Teacher Land (MRTA) with my act,” he said. “They seemed to love it. Now I get asked consistently to perform. It is a good time and a chance to bring back one of America’s greatest public servants and promote the progressive agenda once again.”
Roosevelt was the 26th president of the United States from 1901-1909. He also served as the vice president under President William McKinley, 33rd governor of New York, assistant secretary of the Navy, president of the New York City Board of Police Commissioners, New York State Assembly minority leader, and member of the New York State Assembly – representing Manhattan.
The event was April 25, 2017 at the MRRL branch downtown at 214 Adams St. in the Art Gallery.
Rachael Herndon is the editor at The Missouri Times, and also produces This Week in Missouri Politics, publishes Missouri Times Magazine, and co-hosts the #moleg podcast. She joined the Missouri Times in 2014, returning to political reporting after working as a campaign and legislative staffer.
Rachael studied at the University of Missouri – Columbia. She lives in Jefferson City with her husband, Brandon, and their two children.
To contact Rachael, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or via Twitter @TheRachDunn.