Founder’s Day Ticket Sales End March 17

Founder’s Day, March 23

Get your tickets NOW for the district’s annual Founder’s Day celebration on Thursday, March 23 at 5:30 p.m. at The Vista at Van Patten Golf Course. (Ticket sales end March 17.)

Tickets can be purchased for $60 at any of the five BH-BL school and Mail ‘N More. Questions? Please contact Joan LaBuff at

Congratulations to this year’s Founder’s Day recipients:

  • BH-BL High School: Ann Derrick (staff) & Daniela Aldi (volunteer)
  • O’Rourke Middle School: Nick Morocco (staff) & Daniela Aldi (volunteer)
  • Stevens Elementary School: Heidi Brower (staff) & Liz Mosier & Mike Mosier (volunteers)
  • Pashley Elementary School: Lindsay Miakisz (staff) & Melissa Sargent (volunteer)
  • Charlton Heights Elementary School: Amy Hotaling (staff) & Kayla Martin (volunteer)
  • District winner: Superintendent Patrick McGrath
  • Distinguished Service winner: Tim Sinnenberg, retired Charlton Heights Principal
  • Special Education PTA winners: Gail Austro, Brian Yager, and Christen Smith

What is Founder’s Day?

To fully understand the significance and importance of Founder’s Day, you need a little background about the National PTA.

The National Parent Teacher Association was founded in 1897 as the National Congress of Mothers by Alice McLellan Birney and Phoebe Apperson Hearst. They founded the organization when women did not have the right to vote and social activism was not popular. To their delight, however, on February 17, 1897, more than 2,000 people—mostly mothers, but also fathers, teachers, laborers and legislators—attended the first convocation of the National Congress of Mothers in Washington, D.C. (Twenty years later, 37 chartered state congresses existed.)

In 1926, Selena Sloan Butler formed the NCCPT to advocate for children, especially African American children in segregated communities.

Birney, Hearst, and Butler had a strong calling to work toward bettering the lives of every child in education, health, and safety. The two associations began holding their conventions in conjunction with one another and worked toward merging in all 50 states. On June 22, 1970, the two congresses signed a Declaration of Unification and officially became one association–-the National PTA. The unification of the two congresses is an important part of National PTA’s history and the association’s continued efforts to serve and make a difference for every child.

Founders’ Day (February 17) has become an important day for PTAs. It’s the day when PTAs around the country recognize the organization’s first convocation and celebrate the legacy and work of the organization’s founders—Alice McLellan Birney, Phoebe Apperson Hearst, and Selena Sloan Butler.

According to the National PTA website: “The founders represented women of imagination and courage. They had a simple idea—to improve the lives and future of all children. They understood the power of individual action, worked beyond the accepted barriers of their day, and took action to change the world for all children.”

And that is why PTAs annually present individuals who are completely dedicated to their school community with the organization’s highest award.