US library to fund literacy awards with $1.5M gift

Thursday - 12/6/2012, 4:01pm EST

By BRETT ZONGKER
Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) - Billionaire investor David Rubenstein is giving the Library of Congress $1.5 million to fund three new literacy awards.

Rubenstein of Bethesda, Md., is co-founder of the Carlyle Group private equity firm. He is a major philanthropist and in 2010 gave the library $5 million to support the National Book Festival.

Rubenstein announced his latest gift Thursday at the first International Summit of the Book, which includes national libraries from Britain, Russia, Spain, Peru and South Africa. Rubenstein says spending time at public libraries while growing up helped open doors for him.

The library will create the David M. Rubenstein Prize to honor a groundbreaking contribution in advancing literacy. It's also creating an American Prize and an International Prize to honor projects that combat disinterest in reading.


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