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Celebrity-Autographed Guitars Auctioned on eBay to Support National Latino Early Literacy Program


Mana, RBD, Luis Fonsi, Johnny Pacheco and Other Artists Autographed Guitars during 7th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards

November 27, 2006 - NEW YORK - Three guitars autographed by Latino celebrities are being auctioned on eBay to raise money for a national Hispanic literacy initiative.

John Leguizamo, Johnny Pacheco, Mana and others autographed the guitars at the 7th Annual Latin GRAMMY® Awards at Madison Square Garden earlier this month. The guitars will be listed on eBay through Saturday, Dec. 2. The proceeds from the sale will support Lee y Seras® (Read and You Will Be), a national, research-based initiative that helps parents and communities build early literacy skills among Latino children.

Other artists and celebrities who autographed the guitars are: RBD, Luis Fonsi, Wison y Yandel, Belén Arjona, Fania All Stars (Gilberto Santa Rosa/Willie Colon), Andy Montañez, Lena Pérez, Rene Lavan, Tonny Tun Tun, Alejandra Barros, Alexa Damian, Anais Martinez, Catalina Sandino Moreno, Former Miss Universe Barbara Palacios, Galilea Montijo, Marisol and Vicky from Horoscopos de Durango, Ivy Queen, Millie Quezada, Paloma San Basilio and Looney Tun-Tunes.

The three autographed Gibson guitars available on eBay are:

* ES 137 Custom Beal Street Blue Gibson; eBay auction No. 200050819737.

* X-Plorer Classic White Gibson; eBay auction No. 200050822780.

* LC1 Sonoma Acoustic Gibson; eBay auction No. 200050821764.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Latinos represent almost 20 percent of the U.S. population under the age of 18 -- the largest minority segment of the nation’s student population. Currently, Hispanic achievement rates at all levels of education remain low. Only 14 percent of Latino fourth-graders and 9 percent of eighth-graders can read at or above basic or advanced skill levels.

Verizon has been a longtime supporter of the Hispanic community and most recently joined the National Council of La Raza and Scholastic Inc. to launch Lee y Serás, a Latino early literacy initiative that engages parents and communities in the literacy development of their children and offers a rich variety of culturally sensitive resources on the Web for volunteers as well as parents. More information about the organization is available at

“Basic literacy is a principal concern of the Verizon Foundation due to literacy’s enormous impact on education, health, economic development and the success in the digital age,” said Patrick Gaston, Verizon Foundation president. “We’re honored to have this amazing group of legends and stars support Lee y seras, which is committed to empowering communities across the country to advance literacy among Latinos.”

As a sponsor of the 7th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards, Verizon is raising literacy awareness on the national stage so that communities can champion this issue to help shape a stronger, more empowered Hispanic community.

For more information about Verizon in Spanish, visit or visit For assistance in Spanish, customers can call 800-743-2483 (West); 800-430-2222 (New England); 800-479-0305 (Pennsylvania and Delaware); 800-560-4652 (New Jersey); 212/718-890-2005 (New York); and (local area code) + 954-6250 (Maryland and West Virginia).

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), a New York-based Dow 30 company, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America’s most reliable wireless network, serving nearly 57 million customers nationwide. Verizon Business operates one of the most expansive wholly-owned global IP networks. Verizon Telecom is deploying the nation’s most advanced fiber-optic network to deliver the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services to customers. For more information, visit


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