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People don’t like to read as much today as they did years ago, according to a 2004 report (Reading at Risk: A Survey of Literary Reading in America) by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). In response to this decline in literacy, in 2006 the NEA introduced The Big Read, a program designed to encourage people to pick up books again and read.

Ten communities participated in the program in the pilot year; today, more than 800 communities are engaged in Big Read activities. Participating communities choose one book to be read and discussed, with lots of diverse activities to encourage people to join in.

In Charlottesville, Va., the Jefferson Madison Regional Library selected the book The Maltese Falcon, by Dashiell Hammett. In addition to “Find the Falcon” and the “Big Read Detective Match,” the library also held a video contest to help promote the book.

To help support The Big Read program and literacy in general, MichieHamlett Attorneys decided to submit a video. The film features personal injury attorney Kevin Ryan and nurse Sophie Schorling, and was filmed and directed by Kevin’s paralegal Al Lisi:

Producing the video was a fun way to support the local community’s Big Read outreach efforts. MichieHamlett won the viewer’s choice award in the video contest!

We encourage other people to support Big Reads in their communities. We need to become “a nation of readers.”

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