Celebrating the Visionary University Founders'

One of the long-standing traditions of Trinity College and Duke University is the observance of honoring the benefactors of the institution. The practice was formalized by the Board of Trustees in 1901, when Oct. 3 was designated as Benefactors’ Day in honor of Washington Duke. In 1926, its name was changed to Duke University Day, and, since 1948, it has been called Founders’ Day.

Although the name has changed over the years, the original intent of honoring the visionaries of the university remains, and we celebrate those who carry on the legacy of Duke University and its tradition of excellence.

This Founders’ Day is particularly meaningful because it was 100 years ago this year that President William Preston Few first began talks with James B. Duke and set in motion the events that would ultimately transform Trinity College into Duke University.