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Nominations open for Alumni Association’s Founders’ Day Awards

Group photo of the 2023 Founders' Day Award recipients.

Nominations are now open for ASU's annual Founders’ Day Awards, which honor those who have made outstanding contributions to both the Alumni Association and the ASU community. Photo courtesy the ASU Alumni Association

November 06, 2023

The Arizona State University Alumni Association is now accepting nominations for its annual Founders’ Day Awards in an effort to honor those who have made outstanding contributions to both the Alumni Association and the ASU community. 

The awards will be presented at the Founders’ Day 2024 celebration, scheduled to take place at the Omni Tempe Hotel on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024.

Founders’ Day, which was first celebrated in 1960 on the eve of the institution’s 75th anniversary, honors the enterprising spirit of those who helped the university’s predecessor, the Tempe Normal School, become a reality on March 7, 1885.

Potential honorees may be nominated from any field that touches upon sustainability, including basic science, innovation, technology, business, law and public policy.

The nomination deadline is 5 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 15. Nominations are being accepted in the following categories:

  • Faculty achievement: This award is presented to faculty members who have demonstrated exemplary contributions related to sustainability in any of three categories: teaching, research and service.
  • Alumni achievement: The association also will present the Alumni Achievement Award and the Young Alumni Achievement Award at the Founders’ Day event. These awards honor alumni who have excelled in their professions and contributed in significant ways related to sustainability, the Alumni Association and/or the community at large. To obtain an application to nominate an alumna/us for either award, contact Jory Butters (

In addition to the awards presented by the Alumni Association, the ASU Foundation For A New American University will present its Philanthropist of the Year Award at the Founders’ Day event. This award, first given in 2010, allows the foundation and the university to recognize community-minded citizens who have made a difference by supporting ASU-affiliated organizations and institutions.

Founders’ Day, ASU’s signature event, has enjoyed considerable growth over the years. Last spring, the event unfolded in front of a record-breaking crowd of nearly 980 community leaders, business executives and alumni, and celebrated seven honorees who exemplify the spirit of ASU’s founders and the university charter. 

Among them were the first female director of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, an alum whose medical device has helped thousands of infants survive jaundice, and a faculty member who led the conversion of ASU’s Biodesign Clinical Testing Laboratory into a COVID-19 testing facility that administered more than 1 million tests.

To make a nomination for the 2024 Founders’ Day Awards, visit

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