10' away is pretty far from any TV that isn't 60" or larger. I usually sit about 6 to 7' away from my 50".
If I were you I'd look on Amazon when buying a TV (just my advice), since you'll usually save ~20 to 25% off, but they're more of a hassle to return if damaged, or whatever...
The consensus around here feels that Panasonic's new TVs are pretty good, despite having an annoying "buzzing" sound. And LG also a good TV. ...From personal experience and comments on these boards - avoid Samsung. Sony on the other hand hasn't been discussed much; dunno why.
You've got a lot of windows in that room, like wow, that's just asking for trouble, especially with your small $1,000 budget. You def want to invest in a TV that's BIG and has a matte screen (which doesn't reflect light). Plasma is still an option, but if that room is noticeably bright even with all the windows closed, then Plasma might mean trouble for you, since they're much dimmer than LCD, and tend to reflect more ambient light.