1993 Horatio Alger Award Winner
"If you’ve been blessed abundantly, you should be willing to volunteer and give back to the people who helped you get where you are."
Deen Day Sanders was born in Adrian, Georgia, in 1933, but moved with her family to Uniontown, Pennsylvania, when she was eight. She attended Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, for two years before marrying Cecil Day. She supplemented her husband's income by selling greeting cards and gift wrap door to door. She completed her degree at Georgia State University and then worked as her husband's secretary while he was building his business, which eventually included the founding of Days Inns of America. After her husband's death in 1978, Sanders took over as chairman of his investment company as well as the Cecil B. Day Foundation. Sanders founded the Cecil B. Day Laboratory for Neuromuscular Research at Massachusetts General Hospital to research treatments for muscular dystrophy, which has afflicted two of her sons.