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NPES Partners To Support Literacy Campaign

Press release from the issuing company

Recognizing the importance of literacy to the future of the nation and the graphic communications industry, NPES The Association for Suppliers of Printing, Publishing and Converting Technologies has joined with ProLiteracy Worldwide to promote programs that raise awareness and improve adult literacy. The new alliance was unveiled at GRAPH EXPO and CONVERTING EXPO 2003 with information in the NPES booth, a presentation by ProLiteracy's President Robert Wedgeworth during the show's Career Awareness Day program for high school students and a show tour for ProLiteracy executives.   Wedgewood explained the myths and facts of adult literacy, noting that reading is a difficult skill to learn and that 21st century literacy includes a wide spectrum of skills and abilities beyond the ability to read, write and calculate. He encouraged the students to get involved by preparing themselves to be part of the 21st century work force, being aware of the literacy component in every major social problem, referring friends who may need assistance to literacy programs and considering volunteer tutoring.   He was joined on the program by Ann Perri, a prepress specialist with Heidelberg USA, who told students and teachers how she became interested in a career in graphic communications. Career Day is jointly sponsored by the Graphic Arts Show Company, producer of the show, and the Graphic Communications Council, an industry coalition to promote careers and education. More than 800 students from 20 schools from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin participated.   Following Career Day, Wedgeworth and other ProLiteracy executives toured the show and met with NPES and GASC President Regis J. Delmontagne, Chairman David R. Reny and his brother Steven, of Standard Finishing Systems.   The partnership between NPES and ProLiteracy grew out of a relationship between the literacy group and Standard Duplicating Machines Corporation, Andover, Massachusetts, parent company of NPES member Standard Finishing Systems. Standard had been a long-standing supporter of both ProLiteracy Worldwide and its regional affiliate, The Eastern Massachusetts Literacy Council. Standard executives, including the Reny brothers, are active in the organization and introduced ProLiteracy to NPES.   Also representing ProLiteracy were Dennis Cook, Vice President of Publishing and Executive Director of New Readers Press; Kirk Shisler, Vice President of Fund Development, and Catherine Santaniello, Fund Development Officer.   "NPES and ProLiteracy are natural partners," said Bethel House Kogut, ProLiteracy's Vice President, Corporate Communications "Simply put, both organizations understand the importance of the printed word. Despite the pervasiveness of other media like radio and television, people still need to be able to read effectively in their daily lives."   NPES President Regis J. Delmontagne called the new alliance "exactly the kind of cooperative effort we need not only to build and preserve print's role in our society but to help print media contribute to our greater national well-being."   After the launch activities at GRAPH EXPO and CONVERTING EXPO, the relationship will include special promotions through the two organizations' web sites, in-kind support through provision of printing and related services, additional communications to NPES members, and further cooperative ventures to be developed by the partners.