As all Girl Scouts know, October 31 is Juliette Gordon Low’s birthday. That’s why it is celebrated as Founder’s Day. But how and when and why did this happen?
It happened because of the loving concern of a friend.
In 1920, Juliette “Daisy” Low stepped down from the presidency of the Girl Scouts. It was the right decision, but it was a decision accompanied by heartache and soul searching on Daisy’s part. For eight years, she had been the driving force behind Girl Scouting. The vital and vibrant organization was her vision. Daisy Low created and then spread Girl Scouting with self-sacrifice, determination, and passion. It occupied more and more of her time and thought until by 1920 Girl Scouting was not just her avocation or her career: Girl Scouting was Daisy Low’s life.
National Director Jane Deeter Rippin knew that. And it worried her. What would become of her dear friend Daisy if she no longer held the reins? How would Daisy feel about turning her “baby,” as one leader called it, over to someone else to raise?
So Jane Deeter Rippin dreamed up Founder’s Day. It would be a fitting way to honor Juliette Low’s irreplaceable actions as founder. It would be a very special day, uniquely celebrated by Girl Scouts. But it was also a friend’s thoughtful attempt to ease the enormous transition for Daisy Low, who knew it was time to step down but who was understandably conflicted about the transition.
Founder’s Day, October 31st: behind this special holiday, in the finest Girl Scout tradition, is the thoughtful kindness of a friend.