To prepare for a globally competitive business environment where the pressure to succeed reaches dizzying heights, a solid education in business ethics has never been more important.
Thanks to a recent commitment from the family of legendary business leader Cecil B. Day Sr., who earned a bachelor's in management from Tech in 1958, the College of Managements's students and faculty will have the benefit of a leading scholar in the field of business ethics. The family's $1.5 million commitment will establish the Cecil B. Day Chair in Business Ethics, upon fulfillment and approval by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.
The Day Chair is intended to attract and/or retain an eminent teacher-scholar involved as a leader in Georgia Tech’s education, research, and outreach initiatives in the area of business ethics.
"My late husband was a smart, successful businessman. But more importantly, he was an honest, ethical man," says Deen Day Sanders, recipient of an honorary Tech degree in 1980 and widow of Cecil B. Day Sr. "A lifetime of strong Christian faith influenced the way he treated everyone, both inside and outside of the business arena. I think it’s important for students to understand that you don’t have to make a choice between success and ethics. That is Cecil’s legacy to us."
Founder of Days Inns of America Inc., Day was one of the country's most accomplished and most respected entrepreneurs at the time of his death in 1978. In the nearly three decades since, Sanders—wife of James R. (Jim) Sanders, who earned a bachelor's in industrial engineering from Tech in 1955—has worked tirelessly to share her late husband’s example and to support numerous worthwhile causes via the Cecil B. Day Foundation and in her role as chairman of the Cecil B. Day Investment Company.
"Cecil Day exhibited a life of integrity, both in what he believed and how he lived," says Steve Salbu, dean of the College of Management and Stephen P. Zelnak Jr. Chair. "At the foundation of his business practices was his desire to be a faithful steward and to treat people fairly and honestly. What better example could there be for management students and other Tech students to have? We appreciate the legacy Cecil Day has left for us, and we are grateful to Mrs. Sanders for sharing that legacy so generously."
A loyal graduate of Georgia Tech, Day highly valued the education he received from the Institute. He was a strong proponent of public education, seeing it as the prime arena for the discussion of issues affecting the nation and as a source of creative and innovative training of future business leaders.
The first Days Inn opened in 1970 in Tybee Island, Georgia. Day was committed to providing the traveling public with quality rooms and courteous service. Within eight years, his Atlanta-based company had grown to more than 300 hotels in the United States and Canada. Today, Days Inn Worldwide franchises more than 1,900 hotels in 15 countries.
- Dan Treadaway, Institute Communications and Public Affairs, from the Philanthropy Quarterly
Director of Communications
Assistant Director of Communications