The History of Founders' Day

Founders’ Day has been an important part of the history of Alcoholics Anonymous. Our current celebration has its roots from our humble beginnings. Here are a few events which have helped shape our annual Founders’ Day celebration.

1941  Bill W. and Dr. Bob were the featured speakers.

1942  Dr. Bob traced the early history of our movement, introduced early members, followed by a buffet supper served by wives of Akron Group #1.

1945  Dr. Bob and Bill W. spoke at a dinner at the Mayflower Ballroom.

1945  A modest celebration was held at the M. O’Neil Auditorium with the co-founders present.

1947  Dr. Bob and A.A. #3 Bill D. were the speakers.

1948  The Akron Armory was used and talks were given by Dr. Walter Tunks, Bill W. and Dr. Bob.

1951  Dr. Bob had died. An open house was held at 855 Ardmore. (Dr. Bob’s Home) Bill spoke at the Goodyear Theater.

1953  Bill W. attended an open house at St. Thomas Hospital.

1957  The first “Play” was introduced and a Sunday morning breakfast was held at The University of Akron’s Memorial Hall.

1958  Bill W. his wife Lois W. and Ethel M. were speakers at The University of Akron’s Memorial Hall.

1961  This was the start of the memorial for Dr. Bob at 9:00 am.

1965  The “Modern” Era of Founders’ Day begins with the first Friday-Sunday Weekend. Founders’ Day is an integral part of the legacy our co-founders have left for us. Founders’ Day has grown to where 10,000 visitors from around the world come each year. Please come to Akron to see, to feel, and to be part of The Fellowship of the Spirit.