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Founders' Day

You’re invited to the 2023 celebration honoring the legacy and innovation of distinguished ASU faculty, alumni and philanthropists.

Founders' Day 2023

On Thursday, March 2, 2023, join ASU President Michael M. Crow, the ASU Alumni Association, Sun Devil alumni and community leaders at the 2023 Founders’ Day celebration. 

Founders’ Day is ASU’s signature event honoring the changemakers whose pioneering achievements and visionary philanthropy have shaped ASU’s spirit of excellence and innovation. Discover what breakthrough research, philanthropy and community work is driving the future of ASU and the world. And join us in celebrating some of the individuals who have contributed to these efforts as ASU alumni, faculty and staff.

Event details:

Day: Thursday, March 2, 2023
Time: 6:00 p.m. MST
Venue: Sheraton Phoenix Downtown
340 N. 3rd Street, Phoenix, 85004

Business or cocktail attire; ASU colors are preferred for this celebration.

Register today

Do you know an outstanding alum or faculty member? We encourage you to nominate this individual to potentially be recognized at a future Founders’ Day celebration.

Alumni nomination  Faculty nomination


Arizona State University annually celebrates the vision and contributions of the institution's founders. A tradition known as Founders' Day, this signature event has taken place since 1964. ASU faculty, staff, alumni and advocates who exemplify the pioneering and innovative spirit of ASU’s founders are honored with excellence-in-achievement awards at the event.

Founders’ Day is celebrated each year in February or March, commemorating the first day of classroom instruction at the original Territorial Normal School in Tempe on Feb. 8, 1886.

Today, Arizona State University is a leading public research university and an internationally prestigious higher education institution recognized by leading rankings publications and services. ASU launched the groundbreaking prototype of the New American University in 2002, and the ultimate journey from a simple schoolhouse to a world-class institution is a testament to the vision, tenacity and hard work of its founders, leaders, faculty, students and alumni through the years. Founders’ Day is a celebration of this founding spirit.

2022 honorees

Past Award Recipients

Founders’ Day 2022

On Thursday, March 17, 2022, more than 800 alumni, faculty, university leaders and community leaders from the Valley gathered in-person to honor the 2022 Founders’ Day honorees. ASU honored three faculty members and four alumni. The honorees included a virologist pivotal in keeping Arizona ahead of COVID-19 mutations, an advocate for democratization of Earth science-oriented topography data, the visionary who helped ASU create the finest honors college for students in the country, two physicians who went above and beyond to serve their communities during the pandemic, an entrepreneurial couple investing in use-inspired research for personal health and sustainable food systems and solutions, and a dynamic public servant and business and educational leader whose accomplishments span decades.

Relive the excitement and stories from the 2022 Founders’ Day celebration.

View recap video            View event photos

Founders' Day


It takes many partners to support Founders’ Day and we are grateful for each of our Founders’ Day sponsors!

Sustaining Sponsors

Premier Sponsors

Dinner Sponsors

Gold Sponsors

Maroon Sponsors

Pitchfork sponsors

Circle K
Willmeng Construction