Congressman’s wife addressing GOP Monday

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 13, 2002

NATCHEZ &045;&045; Holding it together as the mother of five children and the wife of a congressman is impressive in itself.

Add on four Congressional Wives Committees, inner-city charities, a former gourmet catering business, an Amish farm, mission work in three countries and teaching and one might wonder exactly how Leisha Prather Pickering does it.

The wife of U.S. Rep. Chip Pickering, R-MS, will speak to the Adams County Republican Party Executive Committee at noon Monday at the Ramada Inn Hilltop.

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And she might even give away a few secrets.

More likely, Pickering will speak about her husband, who is facing off against U.S. Rep. Ronnie Shows, D-MS, for the newly combined Third Congressional District.

As for Mrs. Pickering, a rundown of her life story could fair as interesting.

Pickering was raised in Memphis, graduated Briarcrest Christian School and attended Ole Miss. While there, she was active in student government, varsity cheerleading, Campus Crusade for Christ and the Reformed University Fellowship.

Pickering was also named to Who’s Who Among Outstanding College Students, the chancellor’s list and dean’s list.

She was also among the first women inducted into the Omicron Delta Kappa scholastic and leadership honor society at the university.

Pickering has combined faith and scholastics throughout her life’s pursuits. Immediately out of college, she spent four years at a high school sponsored by Highland Park Presbyterian Church in Dallas.

Enjoying her work with children and serving her church, Pickering set out to do something a little different &045;&045; working on an Aish Farm in Lancaster County, Penn.

From there, her adventurous spirit took her to the Phillipines, China and the Dominican Republic as a missionary.

Today, Pickering is the member of several Congressional Wives Committees, including Race for the Cure, First Ladies Luncheon, Habitat for Humanity and Cookbook Committee.

She has not lost her love for children, either, and not just her own. Pickering still works with a number of inner-city groups.

And while Will, Ross, Jackson, Asher and Harper &045;&045; not to leave out husband Chip &045;&045; keep Pickering busy, she says she still finds time to cook, something for which she is well-known.

In fact, Pickering once owned her own gourmet catering business, having a special talent for pastries and desserts.

But for Monday’s luncheon, Pickering said she will only do the talking.

Lunch is Dutch treat, and the meeting is open to the public.