Remarks by the First Lady at Zurich Classic of New Orleans Birdies for Books Breakfast

Apr 19, 2007, 01:00 ET from White House Press Office

    WASHINGTON, April 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Following is a
 transcript of remarks by First Lady Laura Bush today at the New Orleans
 Birdies for Books Golf Tournament Breakfast:
     The  Ritz-Carlton
 
     New Orleans, Louisiana
 
     8:50 A.M. CDT
     MRS. BUSH: Thank you very much, Jim, and thank you, Tommye, Jim's wife,
 for everything that you've done to make sure this golf tournament goes on
 as we all want it to, at the newly refurbished golf course here, the TPC
 Louisiana course. And I want to thank you very much for making sure this
 golf tournament is in New Orleans. I'm very happy to be here with all of
 you for this.
     I think Secretary Margaret Spellings is here, is she? Oh, there she is.
 (Applause.) Secretary -- our Secretary of Education, Margaret Spellings.
 Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu, has joined us today. Thank you very, very
 much, Governor, for being with us. (Applause.) Ambassador Pam Willeford,
 who is the Chair of the Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries, is
 here. Pam, thank you for coming. (Applause.) And I'm very happy to welcome
 to New Orleans the Ambassador from Switzerland, Ambassador Urs Ziswiler.
 Thank you very much for joining us. (Applause.) And the Ambassador's wife,
 Ronit. Thank you very much for coming, as well.
     PGA wives that are here today, leaders from Zurich Financial,
 representatives of the Fore!Kids Foundation, Women of the Storm, and
 distinguished guests. Thank you all very much for coming to this breakfast,
 and to this year's Zurich Classic. Recreational facilities like the TPC
 Golf Course, and sporting events like the PGA Tour, are important to the
 rebuilding of New Orleans. So thank you for keeping the Zurich Classic here
 in the Crescent City. (Applause.)
     Another vital piece of the recovery is New Orleans's culture -- its
 beloved art, music, and, of course, its cuisine. In a minute, Emeril will
 be teaching us how to make New Orleans specialties, like shrimp and grits,
 and I want to thank Emeril Lagasse, and Alden, as well, for joining us
 today. (Applause.)
     We all know, though, that the Gulf Coast recovery ultimately depends on
 its schools. Until there are schools for children, families can't return
 home. And never before in our history have state school superintendents and
 state officials faced the challenge of rebuilding whole school districts as
 quickly as possible.
     According to the U.S. Department of Education, more than a thousand
 private and public schools in the Gulf Coast region were damaged or
 destroyed. More than 372,000 students moved -- were displaced to new
 classrooms in all 50 states. Today, every school district in Mississippi
 has
     reopened. In Louisiana, 94 percent of schools have opened their doors.
 In New Orleans, 58 public and charter schools are now up and running.
     And of course, these newly rebuilt schools need new libraries. In
 September 2005, the Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries
 established a special fund to help schools rebuild their book and material
 collections. Since then, the Foundation's Gulf Coast School Library
 Recovery Initiative has awarded about $2.5 million to 54 schools in
 Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, and Texas.
     These grants will help librarians build new collections, especially
 chosen collections, that support their schools' curriculum. And they'll
 help young people who use these libraries find comfort and inspiration in
 their favorite books.
     These grants are made possible by the support of generous individuals,
 good corporate citizens like Zurich Financial, and charities such as
 Fore!Kids. The Fore!Kids Foundation has donated more than $15 million to
 local New Orleans charities -- and by hosting the PGA Tour, it adds an
 estimated $25 million to the local economy every year. Thank you very, very
 much. (Applause.)
     Today, Zurich and Fore!Kids are extending their generosity to the Laura
 Bush Foundation through the "Birdies for Books" program. For each birdie
 scored in the Classic, Zurich will award $100 to the School Library
 Recovery Initiative. This is one time when we actually want sub-par
 performances. (Laughter.) In fact, before I came, President Bush told me he
 was glad he wasn't playing, or otherwise, it would have to be "Bogeys for
 Books." (Laughter.)
     We hope "Birdies for Books" gives players an extra incentive to do well
 on the links. And we already know what it will give the children of the
 Gulf Coast. With the money donated by Zurich, the Laura Bush Foundation
 will help put books on the shelves of more school libraries. Rebuilt
 libraries will help bring children back to their schools. And rebuilt
 schools will bring families back to a revitalized Gulf Coast.
     Thank you to Zurich Financial Services, and the Fore!Kids Foundation,
 and to the PGA Tour for your generosity. And thanks to each and every one
 of you for your commitment to New Orleans. I wish you the very best for a
 great Zurich Classic -- and one with lots of birdies.
     Thank you all very much. (Applause.)
                          END               8:56 A.M. CDT
 
 

SOURCE White House Press Office
    WASHINGTON, April 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Following is a
 transcript of remarks by First Lady Laura Bush today at the New Orleans
 Birdies for Books Golf Tournament Breakfast:
     The  Ritz-Carlton
 
     New Orleans, Louisiana
 
     8:50 A.M. CDT
     MRS. BUSH: Thank you very much, Jim, and thank you, Tommye, Jim's wife,
 for everything that you've done to make sure this golf tournament goes on
 as we all want it to, at the newly refurbished golf course here, the TPC
 Louisiana course. And I want to thank you very much for making sure this
 golf tournament is in New Orleans. I'm very happy to be here with all of
 you for this.
     I think Secretary Margaret Spellings is here, is she? Oh, there she is.
 (Applause.) Secretary -- our Secretary of Education, Margaret Spellings.
 Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu, has joined us today. Thank you very, very
 much, Governor, for being with us. (Applause.) Ambassador Pam Willeford,
 who is the Chair of the Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries, is
 here. Pam, thank you for coming. (Applause.) And I'm very happy to welcome
 to New Orleans the Ambassador from Switzerland, Ambassador Urs Ziswiler.
 Thank you very much for joining us. (Applause.) And the Ambassador's wife,
 Ronit. Thank you very much for coming, as well.
     PGA wives that are here today, leaders from Zurich Financial,
 representatives of the Fore!Kids Foundation, Women of the Storm, and
 distinguished guests. Thank you all very much for coming to this breakfast,
 and to this year's Zurich Classic. Recreational facilities like the TPC
 Golf Course, and sporting events like the PGA Tour, are important to the
 rebuilding of New Orleans. So thank you for keeping the Zurich Classic here
 in the Crescent City. (Applause.)
     Another vital piece of the recovery is New Orleans's culture -- its
 beloved art, music, and, of course, its cuisine. In a minute, Emeril will
 be teaching us how to make New Orleans specialties, like shrimp and grits,
 and I want to thank Emeril Lagasse, and Alden, as well, for joining us
 today. (Applause.)
     We all know, though, that the Gulf Coast recovery ultimately depends on
 its schools. Until there are schools for children, families can't return
 home. And never before in our history have state school superintendents and
 state officials faced the challenge of rebuilding whole school districts as
 quickly as possible.
     According to the U.S. Department of Education, more than a thousand
 private and public schools in the Gulf Coast region were damaged or
 destroyed. More than 372,000 students moved -- were displaced to new
 classrooms in all 50 states. Today, every school district in Mississippi
 has
     reopened. In Louisiana, 94 percent of schools have opened their doors.
 In New Orleans, 58 public and charter schools are now up and running.
     And of course, these newly rebuilt schools need new libraries. In
 September 2005, the Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries
 established a special fund to help schools rebuild their book and material
 collections. Since then, the Foundation's Gulf Coast School Library
 Recovery Initiative has awarded about $2.5 million to 54 schools in
 Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, and Texas.
     These grants will help librarians build new collections, especially
 chosen collections, that support their schools' curriculum. And they'll
 help young people who use these libraries find comfort and inspiration in
 their favorite books.
     These grants are made possible by the support of generous individuals,
 good corporate citizens like Zurich Financial, and charities such as
 Fore!Kids. The Fore!Kids Foundation has donated more than $15 million to
 local New Orleans charities -- and by hosting the PGA Tour, it adds an
 estimated $25 million to the local economy every year. Thank you very, very
 much. (Applause.)
     Today, Zurich and Fore!Kids are extending their generosity to the Laura
 Bush Foundation through the "Birdies for Books" program. For each birdie
 scored in the Classic, Zurich will award $100 to the School Library
 Recovery Initiative. This is one time when we actually want sub-par
 performances. (Laughter.) In fact, before I came, President Bush told me he
 was glad he wasn't playing, or otherwise, it would have to be "Bogeys for
 Books." (Laughter.)
     We hope "Birdies for Books" gives players an extra incentive to do well
 on the links. And we already know what it will give the children of the
 Gulf Coast. With the money donated by Zurich, the Laura Bush Foundation
 will help put books on the shelves of more school libraries. Rebuilt
 libraries will help bring children back to their schools. And rebuilt
 schools will bring families back to a revitalized Gulf Coast.
     Thank you to Zurich Financial Services, and the Fore!Kids Foundation,
 and to the PGA Tour for your generosity. And thanks to each and every one
 of you for your commitment to New Orleans. I wish you the very best for a
 great Zurich Classic -- and one with lots of birdies.
     Thank you all very much. (Applause.)
                          END               8:56 A.M. CDT
 
 SOURCE White House Press Office