A month after receiving the National Literary Leadership Award, David Baldacci and his wife Michelle earned more recognition for their work promoting literacy and libraries Saturday night.
Fairfax Library Foundation honored the couple at its fourth annual Library Jubilee, which Oakton Library hosted for the first time.
The Baldaccis, who live in Vienna off Hunter Mill Road, started the Reston-based Wish You Well Foundation in 2000 in an effort to support "family literacy in the United States by fostering and promoting the development and expansion of new and existing literacy and educational programs," according to the organization's website — a mission Fairfax Library Foundation shares.
They also played an instrumental role in bringing awareness and raising funds to open Oakton Library, which celebrated its fifth anniversary Sept. 29.
"They have been very involved in our community and support for our libraries from the very beginning,," said Fairfax County School Board member Patty Reed (Providence), who co-chaired this year's Jubilee and previously served as president of Friends of Oakton Library. "They have been involved in volunteering, they have provided financial support, and they have just done so much that people don't know about, quietly and very effectively."
In addition to David Baldacci's National Literary Leadership Award last month, the best-selling author has been honored as the Virginia Press Association's Virginian of the Year and speaks to various groups across the country about the importance of literacy.
Michelle Baldacci is a board member of the Virginia Literacy Foundation, active in the Wish You Well Foundation and a past officer of the Friends of Oakton Library.
Both of their children have volunteered with the Friends of Oakton Library.
"[Recognition for our efforts] is very nice, but I think Michelle and I realize there are people out there every day doing this, doing far more than we do," David Baldacci said. "... [I]t's nice for our ego, but if it raises awareness for the problem as a total, so other people will come in and start contributing their time and personal assets to it, then that's what it really means."
David Baldacci is the author of 24 best-selling novels, including Absolute Power and Last Man Standing. His latest novel, The Innocent, debuted at No. 1 on New York Times hardcover fiction bestseller list where it stayed for 15 weeks. Baldacci will release his next novel, The Forgotten on Nov. 20.
For a video of Saturday's recognition, click the media box at the top of this article.
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