- NAME: Laura Bush
- OCCUPATION: Educator, Philanthropist, U.S. First Lady
- BIRTH DATE: November 04, 1946 (Age: 66)
- EDUCATION: Southern Methodist University, University of Texas, Robert E. Lee High School
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Midland, Texas
- Maiden Name: Laura Lane Welch
- Full Name: Laura Lane Welch Bush
- AKA: Laura Welch Bush
- AKA: Laura Bush
- AKA: Laura Welch
- ZODIAC SIGN: Scorpio
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Laura Bush is the wife of 43rd U.S. President George W. Bush. She served as first lady from 2001 to 2009.
Laura Bush - Mini Bio (3:44)
Barbara Bush - Full Biography (44:48)
Growing up in the small community of Midland, Texas, Laura Bush fell in love with books at an early age. Literacy, gender equality, and education were her chief causes as First Lady.
A short biography of George W. Bush who started out as governor of Texas in 1994 and then became president in 2000. From his handling of 9/11 to the Iraq War, Bush is considered one of the most polarizing presidents of the modern era.
Barbara Bush is the first woman since Abigail Adams to be wife to one U.S. President and mother to another. As First Lady, she led a long crusade against illiteracy.
A World War II veteran, George H.W. Bush served as Vice President for two terms before being elected President of the United States in 1988.
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This time, he won, and Laura Bush was thrust into the public arena of being the state's first lady. Still a reluctant speaker, Laura developed more confidence and began to take advantage of her elevated position to support causes and projects important to her. She successfully lobbied for the state funding of early reading, literacy and early childhood development programs. She also supported breast cancer awareness, and raised nearly $1 million for public libraries.
In early 2000,
George W. Bush began his campaign for the U.S. presidency. Laura Bush enthusiastically supported her husband, appearing at rallies and avoiding controversy during the campaign. She made her first major national speech at the 2000 Republican National Convention in Philadelphia. Bush went on to win the closest presidential race in American history against his Democratic opponent, Al Gore.
Although Laura planned to keep a low profile as first lady, national events made that nearly impossible. The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks riveted attention on the Bush Administration, and Laura joined her husband in comforting the nation. In the aftermath of the attacks, she addressed parents' anxiety and fear over how the event affected their children. She frequently spoke about ways parents could comfort their families traumatized by the event.
During her first term as first lady, Laura Bush continued to lend support to education, childhood development and teacher training. In January 2002, she testified before the Senate Committee on Education, calling for higher teachers' salaries and better training for Head Start programs. She created a national initiative called "Ready to Read * Ready to Learn" to promote reading at an early age. Additionally, she lobbied to continue work on saving America's national treasures, and supported the "Preserve America" campaign.
During the 2004 campaign, Laura dramatically elevated her public role as first lady by delivering a major policy speech at the Republican National Convention, and later, during the campaign, by speaking about major policy accomplishments and goals of the Bush Administration. Such speeches are usually left for office holders and political supporters. After Bush's win, Laura increased her activities by leading initiatives in health, literacy and gender equality. She traveled to Afghanistan to promote a new teacher-training institute for Afghan women. In 2005, she spoke at the World Economic Forum, emphasizing the link between education and fostering democracy.
Throughout the final years of George W. Bush's second term, Laura continued to support women's health. In 2007, the Laura W. Bush Institute for Women's Health was founded at Texas Tech University. Traveling around the county, Laura spoke at events on the importance of early detection of heart disease. In October 2007, she traveled to the Middle East in an attempt to improve America's image by highlighting concern for women's health and promoting breast cancer awareness.
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Did you know that since 1912, nearly 50 million girls in the United States have joined the Girl Scouts? Girl Scouts helped an amazingly diverse array of famous women develop a strong foundation of courage, confidence and character. It's no surprise then that quite a few famous women spent time in the sash. Celebrities who got their start selling cookies and earning merit badges include Wonder Woman star Lynda Carter and actress/writer Carrie Fisher; former first ladies Hillary Clinton, Laura Bush and Nancy Reagan; Olympic skaters Bonnie Blair and Peggy Fleming; astronaut Sally Ride; and iconic women's rights activist Gloria Steinem. Browse our collection of inspiring famous Girl Scouts who have certainly earned merit badges in their fields.
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When the 19th Amendment was ratified, women were finally given the right to vote, and over the years many courageous women have stepped onto the national political stage as well. In 1916, Jeannette Rankin became the first woman elected to Congress and almost a century later Sonia Sotomayor became the first Latina woman to serve on the Supreme Court. And within the last two decades, the esteemable Hillary Clinton has served as First Lady, a New York senator and Secretary of State. These women, and many more, are setting the stage for the future of female leaders in Washington.
Visit Biography.com's Women's History group to explore more biographies, photos and videos of some the world's most fascinating women."
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