2019 Assembly Joint Resolution 101
Relating to: recognizing the Jaycees' ongoing commitment to community involvement and commending the organization upon its 100th anniversary of its founding.
Whereas, the Jaycees movement began in October 1915, as Henry Giessenbier Jr. created the Young Men's Progressive Civic Association in St. Louis as a way for local youth to be more active in their community; and
Whereas, the Jaycees officially started during a two-day conference in St. Louis in January 1920. The conference brought together 3,000 young adults from over 29 national organizations, and the organization was initially known as the U.S. Junior Chamber of Commerce. Henry Giessenbier Jr. was elected the first president of the new organization; and
Whereas, in 1923, the Jaycees became an international organization with the creation of a branch in Canada, the first chapter created outside the United States. Over the next five years, multiple chapters were started in England, marking the first time the organization spread outside North America. By 1943, the movement had spread through Central America, and a year later the first international conference was held; and
Whereas, over the years, the Jaycees have played a prominent role in a number of national causes: the development of the U.S. Airmail Service, the first Get Out the Vote campaign, the formation of the National Wildlife Foundation, Operation Threshold, which is aimed at reducing alcohol abuse, the distribution of over 7 million doses of the rubella measles vaccine, the Jaycees Against Youth Smoking program, and the Jaycee KidCare I.D. Program, which assists in locating missing children; and
Whereas, since its inception, the Jaycees have had over 11 million members in the United States and 20 million worldwide. Members include Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Gerald Ford, and Richard Nixon; Vice Presidents Al Gore, Hubert Humphrey, and Walter Mondale; Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court Warren Burger; and Elvis Presley, Larry Bird, and Bill Gates; and
Whereas, in Wisconsin, the Jaycees have shown their commitment to their communities through a number of worthwhile projects including the La Crosse Thunder Ride for Juvenile Diabetes, the Lake Geneva Walk to End Alzheimer's, the Fourth of July Fireworks in Appleton, and the construction of many parks, playgrounds, and elderly housing; and
Whereas, today, the Jaycees are made up of active citizens between the ages of 18 and 40 who are dedicated to the future of their communities and the world as a whole. Membership is over 200,000 individuals worldwide, as the Jaycees have expanded to over 5,000 local organizations and 123 nations; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the assembly, the senate concurring, That the legislature, in recognition of the Jaycees' ongoing commitment to community involvement through the enhancement of the leadership skills, knowledge, and understanding of young adults, does hereby commend the organization upon its 100th anniversary of its founding.