First Lady of Bolivia
Incumbent
Lourdes Brigida Durán Romero

since 8 November 2020
ResidencePalacio Quemado, La Paz
Inaugural holderMariana Carcelén
Formation20 April 1828

The First Lady or First Gentleman of Bolivia (Spanish: Primera Dama o Primer Caballero de Bolivia) is the title usually attributed to the wife or husband of the President of Bolivia, or official designee in place of a spouse. She or he fulfills official protocol functions when accompanying the president.

The position of First Lady of Bolivia is currently held by Lourdes Brigida Durán Romero, wife of President Luis Arce, since he assumed the presidency on 8 November 2020.

History

Mariana Carcelén, who became the inaugural First Lady of Bolivia in 1828.
Mariana Carcelén, who became the inaugural First Lady of Bolivia in 1828.

Mariana Carcelén, an Ecuadorian-born aristocrat and wife of Bolivian independence leader and President Antonio José de Sucre, is considered the inaugural First Lady of Bolivia.[1] Carcelén married President Sucre on April 20, 1828, and briefly held the position for just eight days until Sucre's resignation from office on April 28, 1828.[2]

President Lidia Gueiler Tejada, Bolivia's first female head of state, was divorced at the time of her tenure in office (1979–1980), so the position remained vacant.[3] She had previously been married twice, first to Mareirian Pérez-Ramírez, a Paraguayan soldier and wealthy rancher, and then to a Bolivian named Edwin Möller Pacieri, but both marriages ended in divorce.[3]

More recently, former President Evo Morales, who was unmarried, selected his older sister, Esther Morales, as his designee for the role of First Lady during his tenure as president, beginning in 2006.[4] Evo Morales later reversed his own decision and dismissed the official title of first lady as "insulting to women" in 2013, to the disappointment of Esther Morales.[5][6] Esther Morales continued to participate in public roles, such as official foreign trips, before withdrawing from public life.[6] She died on August 16, 2020, after contracting COVID-19 during the pandemic in Bolivia.[6]

Héctor Hincapié Carvajal, a Colombian politician and second husband of President Jeanine Áñez, became Bolivia's first First Gentleman in its history when Áñez assumed the interim presidency on November 12, 2019.[7][8]

References

  1. ^ Pérez Pimentel, Rodolfo. "Mariana Carcelén y Larrea". Diccionario Biográfico del Ecuador (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 2020-08-28. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  2. ^ Pita Pico, Roger. "La Marquesa de Solanda y el general Antonio José de Sucre". Red Cultural del Banco de la República en Colombia (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 2020-10-03. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  3. ^ a b Hoge, Warren (1979-11-19). "The Woman in Charge of Bolivia". New York Times. Archived from the original on 2020-10-03. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  4. ^ "De vendedora a primera dama del país". EFE (in Spanish). La Nación. 2006-01-22. Archived from the original on 2020-10-03. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  5. ^ "Evo Morales cree que el título de primera dama "es un insulto para la mujer"". Radio Cooperativa. 2013-04-11. Archived from the original on 2020-07-20. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  6. ^ a b c "La hermana de Evo Morales, que pudo haber sido primera dama, fallece en Bolivia". EFE (in Spanish). Infobae. 2020-08-16. Archived from the original on 2020-10-03. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  7. ^ Esper, Luz M. (2019-11-13). "Colombiano es el primer caballero en Bolivia". EFE (in Spanish). Canal Tropical. Archived from the original on 2020-07-23. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
  8. ^ Esper, Luz M. (2019-11-13). "Así es Jeanine Añez, la nueva presidenta de Bolivia: presentadora, madre de dos hijos y casada con un político colombiano". Vanity Fair (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 2020-08-28. Retrieved 2020-10-03.