Garfield the Cat--the overweight feline who mocks human laziness in comic strips--is working overtime to boost a noble cause in Indiana: K-12 education.
Indiana residents can buy vehicle license plates with Garfield's picture on them and support education at the same time, through a campaign promoted by the Indiana education department and the Farm Bureau Insurance Co.
"For an additional $37, Hoosier motorists can show their fellow drivers they've made a commitment to support education," said Mary M. Tiede Wilhelmus, the director of communications for the state education department.
Motorists can earmark their donations for districts of their choice. Even so, the department will grant one-fourth of the total amount of donations to help districts hire new school counselors.
Six elementary schools recently received matching grants for that purpose.
Sales from the Garfield plates had raised $432,650 for education as of July.
The plates raked in $661,800 last year.
Cartoonist Jim Davis, who lives near Muncie, Ind., created the Garfield character.
Looking to the familiar, virtually all-male lineup of prospective presidential candidates in 2000, Marie C. Wilson, the creator of "Take Our Daughters to Work Day" asked the obvious: "Where are the women?"
Not one to wait around for answers, Ms. Wilson, the president of the Ms. Foundation for Women in New York City, has joined up with Laura Liswood, the vice chairwoman of the Council of Women World Leaders at Harvard University, and Barbara Lee, a Boston-based philanthropist, to start the White House Project, an initiative aimed at encouraging young girls and women to aspire to the nation's highest office.
A nonpartisan initiative, the project will distribute 8 million "ballots" listing 20 notable women from education, politics, business, medicine, and the military.
The ballots, to be available beginning this month in magazines, on the Internet, and outside polling places, will ask voters to pick five women they would like to see seek the presidency.
The top five nominees are expected to be announced in early December.
--MARY ANN ZEHR & KERRY A. WHITE
Vol. 18, Issue 2, Page 3