FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release Date: 
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Category: 
Chris Danielsen
Director of Public Relations
National Federation of the Blind
(410) 659-9314, extension 2330
(410) 262-1281 (Cell)

Official launch ceremony for the Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar

WHAT:      Official launch ceremony for the Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar

WHEN:      Thursday, March 26, 2009 (10:00-11:00 a.m.)
                Doors open to media starting at 8:00 a.m.

WHERE:     National Federation of the Blind (headquarters)
                1800 Johnson Street, Baltimore, MD 21230

SPEAKERS: Dr. Marc Maurer, President, National Federation of the Blind
                 Ed Moy, Director of the United States Mint
                 Dr. Fred Schroeder, First Vice President, National Federation of the Blind
                 Dr. Abraham Nemeth, Creator of the Braille Code for Mathematics
                 Three blind students demonstrating their Braille-reading skills

The Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar will be officially presented by the United States Mint to the National Federation of the Blind at a special ceremony attended by blind leaders from across the country:

  • Issued in honor of the 200th birthday of Louis Braille, this unique, commemorative coin marks the most significant investment ever in advancing literacy for 1.3 million blind Americans. The goal – to double the literacy rate among the blind by 2015.
  • Funds raised through the coin’s sale are authorized to support “Braille Readers are Leaders” – a national literacy campaign recently launched to increase Braille instruction nationwide.
  • The Louis Braille Bicentennial Silver Dollar is the first U.S. coin to feature readable Braille. Just 400,000 coins have been authorized to be minted and they will not be sold after December 31, 2009.

At the ceremony, The National Federation of the Blind will address the appalling Braille literacy crisis facing the blind and present key findings of a special report to the nation: "THE BRAILLE LITERACY CRISIS IN AMERICA: Facing the Truth, Reversing the Trend, Empowering the Blind." An embargoed copy of the report is available in advance.

MEDIA CONTACT:
To confirm your attendance at the ceremony or plan coverage needs, contact:

Scott Carman
scott.carman@fleishman.com 202-828-9712

Jessica Freeh jfreeh@nfb.org (410) 659-9314 at extension 2348