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Oregon representative chooses 'I Am Sonia Sotomayor,' a children's picture-book biography of the U.S. Supreme Court justice.

PMG PHOTO: PETER WONG - U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici, D-Ore., reads aloud from 'I Am Soto Sotomayor' during Read Across America Day on Friday in the 5th grade class of Suzanne Smith at Maplewood Elementary School in Portland.U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici was one of almost three dozen guest readers at Maplewood Elementary School in Portland on Read Across America Day on Friday.

Bonamici, a Democrat from Beaverton, read aloud "I Am Sonia Sotomayor" by Brad Meltzer, the 16th in a series of New York Times picture-book biographies for children. Then she answered questions from fifth graders in Suzanne Smith's class.

In response to one question, Bonamici said she has met Sotomayor — the first Hispanic member of the U.S. Supreme Court, and its third-ever woman — and Justices Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan.

Asked what she likes about her current position, Bonamici replied, "Every day I learn something new. Every day is different."

Read Across America Day coincides with the birthday of Dr. Seuss, the pen name of Theodor Seuss Geisel.

Long before she entered politics, Bonamici was an advocate for public schools. Her son and daughter attended Beaverton schools.

"I try to do it every March," Bonamici said.

"Being in schools and talking with students gives me hope for the future. Their questions are great. Getting them exposed to how representatives make decisions and what they care about is important. We need more civics education."

Bonamici's 1st District of northwest Oregon extends west from Multnomah County west of the Willamette River to Washington County and three others.

Among other guest readers, according to school officials, were Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese; Timber Joey, the mascot of the Portland Timbers Major League Soccer team; members of the men's football and women's soccer teams at Portland State University and from the Hillsboro Hops minor league baseball team; a Portland School Board member, Portland Fire Bureau and U.S. Coast Guard employees.

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