First Lady Barbara Bush

Her White House Historical Association biography declares: "Rarely has a First Lady been greeted by the American people and the press with the approbation and the warmth accorded to Barbara Pierce Bush. Perhaps this is prompted by the image she calls 'everybody's grandmother.' People are comfortable with her white hair, her warm, relaxed manner, and her keen wit. With characteristic directness, she said people like her because they know 'I'm fair and I like children and I adore my husband.'"

Devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and tireless family literacy advocate, it was also Barbara Bush’s selfless service to others that made her one of the most endearing figures in our nation's history and in the hearts of every life she touched. A strong proponent of volunteerism, she helped a broad range of causes -- including caring for the homeless and the elderly, feeding the hungry, treatment of the AIDS virus, and a variety of children's and other worthy charities. Of course, Barbara Bush's signature cause came to be family literacy. Her Foundation for Family Literacy, from which she stepped aside in 2012, has raised and awarded over $110 million to create or expand family literacy programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

“She is no stranger to dedicating her considerable skills and talent to helping others,” a 2002 tribute narrated by broadcaster Harry Smith went. “Throughout her years in public life, she has volunteered in helping hundreds of charitable and humanitarian causes. She has remained one of the most popular and admired women in the nation … Through her tireless service to others, Barbara Bush succeeds in showing us that, as she herself once noted, what happens in your house is every bit as important as what happens in the White House.”