Today we honor the memory of a lifelong champion of children and reading who recently passed away. Ruth P. Graves, President Emerita of Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), was an early supporter of First Book and a leader who displayed a passion for reaching children through books. Ruth believed that every child deserved the magic of books, and made it her life’s work to ensure that magic for hundreds of thousands of children every year. During more than three decades of commitment to RIF, Ruth helped to extend RIF’s work to reach to support more than three million children nationwide.
First Book and RIF have worked together at the national and local levels for many years to support RIF’s mission of inspiring children to become lifelong readers through the opportunity to select and own their own books. We are very grateful to Ruth for her commitment to RIF’s mission and her support of First Book during the early years of our organization, including providing First Book with one of our first grants that allowed us to reach our country’s poorest children. Ruth’s contributions have been many and her legacy will live on through the amazing work that RIF continues to do today. She changed the world for the better and inspired others to do the same.
In honor of Ruth’s work, memorial contributions may be made to Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), P.O. Box 33728, Washington, DC 20033 or through the Donate/Ways to Give pages at www.rif.org. First Book is also pleased to distribute 1,000 new books to children in Ms. Graves’ home state of Texas in her honor.