Sam Wiley & National Family Week History
National Family Week was founded in 1968 by Sam Wiley, a former teacher and administrator from Indianapolis.
Wiley partnered with the Alliance for Children and Families around 1970. The Alliance continues to annually promote the celebration, which is observed during the week of Thanksgiving by Alliance members, but also by numerous community organizations, schools, and universities.
In 2011, the Alliance connected with Wiley’s great-niece, Karen Gardner. Gardner provided a variety of historical photos, National Family Week proclamations from former U.S. presidents, and news articles. Many of these materials are included below.
- Comments paying tribute to Wiley offered by Senator Chuck Grassley and reflected in the Senate Congressional Record from 1999
- Information about Wiley's family, birth, and death
- National Family Week proclamations
- Article from The Indianapolis Star, Nov. 28, 1998, shortly before Wiley's death
For more information, contact the Alliance Marketing and Communications Department.
National Family Week
The Alliance National Family Week Planning Toolkit helps you plan and execute successful observances with:
- Step-by-step instructions for gaining media attention
- Fill-in-the-blank outreach templates
- Ideas for local events
- Tips for fundraising and gaining support