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Barbara Bush Foundation Presents “Champion for Literacy” Award to Senator Lamar Alexander

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Jeb Bush, Jr., Senator Lamar Alexander, and David Rubenstein


Washington, D.C. – Senator Lamar Alexander received the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy’s “Champion for Literacy” award last night during the National Celebration of Reading.

Barbara Bush Foundation Board of Directors member Jeb Bush, Jr. joined philanthropist David Rubenstein onstage to present Alexander with the award in recognition of his long career of education advocacy. Bush shared the following statement from his grandmother, former first lady Barbara Bush:

“George and I have had the great fortune to count Senator Lamar Alexander as a friend and fellow education advocate for nearly three decades now. I remember clearly his dedication when we worked the phones together for the passage of the National Literacy Act in 1991 during his tenure as Secretary of Education. It’s been inspiring to watch him use that same passion and drive to fight for education over the years—first in his home state of Tennessee as governor, and now nationally as a member of the Senate. He shares our belief in the power of education to help Americans of all ages reach their full potential, and his tireless work in service of that belief makes him a true Champion for Literacy.”

A seventh-generation Tennessean, Alexander served two terms as the state’s governor and three years as president of the University of Tennessee before being called to serve at the national level. In 1991, during his tenure as U.S. Secretary of Education under President George H.W. Bush, he oversaw the passage and implementation of the National Literacy Act.

This landmark law—inspired in large part by Barbara Bush’s passion for literacy—created a focus on adult literacy within the U.S. Department of Education. Since its passage, millions of adults have had a second chance to earn their high school diploma, and tens of millions more have learned to read, write and speak English.

Alexander was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2002, and continues his focus on education in his role as chair of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

For more information: Contact Lauren Sproull, Director of Communications, at 850.562.5300 or lauren.sproull@barbarabush.org.

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You may also contact us by phone at 850.562.5300 or by mail at:
Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy
516 North Adams Street • Tallahassee, Florida 32301