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Serena Is A Poster Girl For American Libraries

By Richard Pagliaro

Reading may have never looked quite so appealing to tennis fans. Serena Williams took time out from writing another championship chapter in her continuing success story on court to promote libraries and literacy as the poster girl in the American Library Association's campaign for American libraries.

The top-ranked Williams donated her time and image to the ALA's campaign by appearing in a "READ" poster and bookmark that is available for sale on the American Library Association web site or by calling (866)-SHOP ALA. The poster costs $15 ($13.50 for ALA members). A book mark bearing Williams' image is on sale for $7 ($6.30 for ALA members) or a set of celebrity bookmarks featuring Williams, skateboarding legend Tony Hawk, wrestling star The Rock, Olympian Marion Jones and a member of the New York City Fire Department can be purchased for $28.

Proceeds from the sale of the poster and bookmark benefit the ALA's mission of promoting libraries, literacy and reading.

An avid reader who often carries as many books as racquets on the road with her, the smiling Grand Slam champion is pictured in the ALA poster standing on a tennis court holding the book A Raisin In The Sun in her left hand while touching the top of the net with her right hand.

"(Serena) is an avid reader and has wide appeal," said Trish Cleary, marketing manager for ALA Graphics. "We are very pleased to bring tennis to the library with Serena Williams. This READ poster will continue to be a best seller for years."

Williams joins a long list of celebrities who have posed for READ posters including actors Denzel Washington, Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Salma Hayek, Sean Connery, Antonio Banderas and Whoopi Goldberg, NBA stars Shaquille O'Neal, Jason Kidd and Grant Hill and musicians Coolio, LL Cool J, Britney Spears, Enrique Iglesias, Melissa Etheridge and Yo-Yo Ma.
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