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MEDIA CONTACT: Elizabeth B. Eckel, Senior Vice President, Marketing
TELEPHONE: 401-348-1309
EMAIL: ebeckel@washtrust.com
DATE: August 27, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Washington Trust Collects 4,000 Books for the United Way of RI

Book Drive

Pictured, from left to right, are Laurie Backall, Major Gifts & Planned Giving Officer of the United Way of Rhode Island; Anthony Maione, President & CEO of the United Way of Rhode Island; Sarah Dennigan, Assistant Director of Books are Wings; Joseph MarcAurele, Chairman, President & CEO of the Washington Trust Company

Westerly, Rhode Island... Washington Trust partnered with the United Way of Rhode Island’s Women’s Leadership Council for a summer book drive that netted more than 4,000 children’s books to benefit “Books Are Wings”, a Rhode Island organization dedicated to ensuring that all children have books in their homes. Washington Trust collected books through the Bank’s 18 Rhode Island branch offices, as well as at its Operations Center and Corporate Headquarters. The United Way of Rhode Island collected approximately 13,000 books during its summer book drive.

“Washington Trust was pleased to partner with and support the United Way in their efforts to improve children’s literacy in Rhode Island,” said Joseph J. MarcAurele, Washington Trust Chairman, President and CEO. “We thank our employees, customers, friends and neighbors, who generously donated 4,000 books, almost one-third of the total collected, to this state-wide literacy initiative.”

“We were astounded to learn that two-thirds of low income families do not have a single book in their home,” stated Kristen L. DiSanto, Washington Trust Senior Vice President of Human Resources.

All of the books collected will be distributed as part of Back to School Celebration RI in conjunction with Books Are Wings. The annual event, which provides children in-need with a backpack full of school supplies for the coming academic year, helps 16,000 local youth statewide. This year, children will have an opportunity to select a book of their choice to begin building their at-home library.

“We need to do everything we can as a community to support literacy programs and foster a love of reading among our young students,” said Anthony Maione, president & CEO of United Way of Rhode Island. “Working together, we can ensure every child in Rhode Island is able to read to learn, and we’re grateful to partners like The Washington Trust Company for their generous support of our efforts to help children succeed in school and in life.”

The Washington Trust Company is a subsidiary of Washington Trust Bancorp, Inc., a $3.0 billion corporation headquartered in Westerly, Rhode Island. Founded in 1800, Washington Trust is the oldest community bank in the nation and is the largest independent bank headquartered in Rhode Island. A state-chartered bank, Washington Trust offers a full range of financial services, including business banking, personal banking, and wealth management and trust services through its offices located in Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts. The Corporation’s common stock trades on The NASDAQ Global Select® Stock Market under the symbol WASH. Web site address: www.washtrust.com.

United Way of Rhode Island has been working to improve the quality of life in Rhode Island communities for over 80 years. UWRI’s mission is to mobilize the caring power of the community to improve the lives of people in need and address the issues Rhode Islanders care most about. For more information, visit www.LIVEUNITEDri.org.

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