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Laura Bush Biography

The Wonk of the Year award recognizes a well-known individual who represents the embodiment of a wonk—someone smart, passionate, focused, and engaged who uses their knowledge and influence to create meaningful change in the world. The 2015 Wonk of the Year is former First Lady Laura Bush.

One of the most beloved and admired American First Ladies, for decades Laura Bush has championed key issues in the fields of education, health care, and human rights. The author of the bestselling memoir, Spoken From The Heart, Mrs. Bush also founded both the Texas Book Festival and the National Book Festival in Washington D.C. Today, as the Chair of the Women’s Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute, Mrs. Bush continues her work on global healthcare innovations, empowering women in emerging democracies, education reform, and supporting the men and women who have served in America’s military.

Born in Midland, Texas to Jenna and Harold Welch, Laura Bush holds a degree in education and a master’s degree in library science. She taught in public schools in Dallas, Houston, and Austin, and worked as a public school librarian. In 1977, she married George W. Bush. The Bushes are the parents of twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna, and grandparents of Mila Hager.

The Wonk of the Year award to recognize a well-known individual who represents the embodiment of a wonk—someone smart, passionate, focused, and engaged who uses their knowledge and influence to create meaningful change in the world.