Laura Bush

Laura W. Bush is the 2009 recipient of the Gloria Lupton Tennison Pioneer Award for decades-long service in the area of literacy. While serving as first lady of Texas from 1995 – 2000, she implemented several pioneering initiatives: Take Time For Kids, an awareness campaign to educate parents and caregivers on parenting; family literacy programs created by Texas communities through the cooperation with the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy; Reach Out and Read, a pediatric reading program; and Ready to Read, an early childhood educational program. She has also raised funds for public libraries through her establishment of the Texas Book Festival and established the First Lady’s Family Literacy Initiative to encourage families to read together.

One of our country’s most popular first ladies, Laura Bush addressed topics of national and global concern during her 2001-2009 tenure. In September, 2001, she joined the Library of Congress to launch the first National Book Festival. The festival has grown each year, attracting more than 120,000 book lovers from across the nation to Washington, D.C., in 2008.

Bush currently serves as Honorary Ambassador for the United Nations Literacy Decade, a result of her leadership role in the 2006 White House Conference on Advancing Global Literacy attracting leaders from the around the world and showcasing successful, culturally aware literacy programs from a diversity of countries.