Laura Bush Fast Facts

(CNN)Here is a look at the life of Laura Bush, wife of 43rd President of the United States George W. Bush.


Birth date: November 4, 1946

Birth place: Midland, Texas
Birth name: Laura Lane Welch
Father: Harold Welch, a successful real-estate developer
Mother: Jenna (Hawkins) Welch
    Marriage: George W. Bush (November 5, 1977 - present)
    Children: Twins Jenna and Barbara, November 25, 1981
    Education: Southern Methodist University, B.S., 1968; University of Texas at Austin, M.L.S., 1973
    Religion: Methodist

    Other Facts:

    Former librarian and elementary school teacher.
    Has served on the boards of various institutions, among them the University of Texas Graduate School of Library and Information Science Advisory Council and the Reading Is Fundamental Advisory Council.

    November 1963 - Seventeen-year-old Laura runs a stop sign and collides with a car driven by a friend. He is thrown from his car and killed.
    1973-1974 - Works at the Houston Public Library, Kashmere Gardens Branch.
    1974-1977 - Works as a librarian at Dawson Elementary School in Austin, Texas.
    November 5, 1977 - Laura and George marry just three months after meeting at the home of mutual friends. Laura quits working after they get married.
    November 8, 1994 - George W. Bush is elected governor of Texas. He is re-elected in 1998.
    1995-2000 - First Lady of Texas.
    1995 - Establishes the Texas Book Festival, an annual event promoting literacy.
    1997 - Becomes involved in an early-childhood development initiative, called the Reach Out and Read program, aimed at helping parents and other caregivers to prepare preschool children for formal instruction in reading.
    January 20, 2001 - Becomes first lady of the United States.
    September 8, 2001 - With the Library of Congress, launches the first National Book Festival which features authors from across the nation.
    November 2001 - Becomes the first first lady in history to record a full presidential radio address, speaking out on the plight of women and children under the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.
    May 2002 - Addresses the people of Afghanistan through Radio Liberty in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic.
    June 4, 2002 - Launches the Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries.
    September 29, 2003 - During a five-day tour focusing on education and literacy, Mrs. Bush visits French President Jacques Chirac.
    September 30, 2003 - Visits Russia as part of her education and literacy tour.
    February 9, 2006 - Is received by Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican.
    November 2006 - Has a cancerous tumor removed from her right shin.
    August 2007 - The Laura W. Bush Institute for Women's Health is founded as part of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.
    October 21, 2007 - Arrives in the United Arab Emirates to begin a four-day tour around the Middle East to raise breast cancer awareness.
    February 16, 2008 - Begins a five-day, five-nation tour of Africa with the president. They visit Benin, Rwanda, Tanzania, Ghana, and Liberia.
    June 2008 - Tours Afghanistan.
    August 2008 - In Thailand, she meets with refugees from Myanmar. Later attends the Olympic Games in Beijing with the president and former President George H.W. Bush.
    September 1, 2008 - Is a speaker at the Republican National Convention.
    December 19, 2008 - An official portrait of Mrs. Bush is unveiled at the Smithsonian Institution's National Portrait Gallery.
    May 4, 2010 - Her autobiography, "Spoken From the Heart," is released.
    May 16, 2010 - Comes out in support of legalizing same-sex marriage and abortion remaining legal on the Larry King Live show.
    April 13, 2013 - Becomes a grandmother for the first time after her daughter, Jenna, and her husband, Henry Hager, have a baby girl, Margaret Laura "Mila" Hager.
    May 10, 2016 - With daughter Jenna, publishes "Our Great Big Backyard," a picture book to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.
    July 20, 2017 - The Asian University for Women announces that Bush will join the university's Council of Patrons, which "advocate(s) for women's education and empowerment in general and Asian University for Women in particular," according to the announcement. Other patrons include First Lady of Japan Akie Abe; former Italian Foreign Minister Emma Bonino; UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova; and former Chief Secretary of Hong Kong Anson Chan.